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MTA Bridges and Tunnels Wins Award

ITS America, the nation's largest transportation technology organization, gave Bridges and Tunnels the award for the agency's Real Time travel signs and its Travel Time website traffic tool.

MTA Bridges and Tunnels Wins Award

"We're pleased to receive this recognition," said MTA Bridges and Tunnels President Jim Ferrara. "The Real Time travel signs and Travel Time website tool are examples of our efforts to communicate more effectively with customers."

Motorists can check conditions on MTA's seven bridges and two tunnels before they leave the house by going to the Bridges and Tunnels webpage at www.mta.info and clicking on the Travel Time information link.

Using data collected from E-ZPass transponders and then scrambled and encrypted to keep the identification of the tag holder anonymous, the online virtual Travel Time application provides graphically animated views of travel speeds and times. The page is updated every five minutes to give the latest traffic information.

Travel Time information can also be accessed through mobile websites on smartphones. This information is meant to be accessed by motorists before leaving home or by their passengers.

The agency also has six new Real Time travel signs, giving travel times to major regional destinations like airports, sports stadiums and connecting highways, in place at the Robert F. Kennedy, Verrazano-Narrows and Henry Hudson Bridges. Two more are slated to go up at the Throgs Neck Bridge, and eventually Real Time signs will be at all nine MTA crossings.

"Real-time traffic information is making life easier for commuters as a way to ‘know before you go,' so drivers can make more informed decisions and choose the fastest route," said Scott Belcher, President and CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based ITS America. He said use of this technology demonstrates "how public agencies can cost-effectively use technology to reduce traffic congestion and ease frustration for daily commuters."

Information for the Real Time travel signs is coordinated through TRANSCOM, a coalition of 16 transportation and public safety agencies in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut that was formed to coordinate and manage regional transportation. TRANSCOM was jointly honored for the Real Time travel signs program.