A R60-million traffic management centre, which will manage congestion, road capacity and road safety on the city’s roads, is to be up and running by 2010.

To be located in Goodwood, the centre is intended to address and respond to traffic incidents in a professional and integrated way.

The project has been in the pipeline since 2005 when the city, with the provincial government, the SA Rail Commuter Corporation and the Airports Company of SA, prepared a joint submission to the national department of transport for 2010 World Cup funding for such a centre.

The city said the centre was seen as a priority for the management of traffic on the freeways and auxiliary arterial road network for the 2010 Soccer World Cup event.

Event organisers would have to identify incidents timeously to put contingency plans in place to minimise their effects.

The initiative was put to the council’s safety and security committee for approval on Thursday, but the absence of a city official to answer questions led to the item being held over to next month’s meeting.

The city-owned site for the traffic management centre is next to the existing disaster management centre and traffic department in Goodwood.

City director for emergency services Pat Adams said that for optimal effectiveness, it was necessary for all the city’s emergency and disaster response units to be housed under one roof, which was not now the case.

Site staff will conduct visual monitoring of the transport network from real-time video and CCTV feeds and detect incidents via information received from field devices.

The centre will liaise directly with emergency services to respond to incidents.

Committee chairperson JP Smith announced that the city was currently in negotiations with unnamed sponsors who would provide the city with at least two helicopters at no cost, to assist with emergency, traffic and fire control operations.

AUTHOR: Metro Writer
DATED: 7th March 2008