Tampa Demos Connected Vehicle Project

The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority will equip 1,600 vehicles with tech that allows cars to communicate with each other

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority

Yesterday the city of Tampa, Florida showed off its connected vehicle technology project. According to Tech Crunch, the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority hosted the first public demo of the project it hopes to launch into testing next year. The plan is to equip 1,600 privately owned vehicles with technology which will communicate with other cars and the road. The cars will pass data on roadway conditions, speed limits, dangers and traffic to each other.

Included in the project are 10 buses which will try to communicate with traffic signals in order to prioritize their movements in order to stay on schedule. Good news for those running late in the morning that get stuck behind a bus. Now the force is with you.

The project is one of three big projects funded through a grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Other cities receiving funding for the project were in New York and Wyoming. Each project is studying a different set of conditions. Not sure that there’s much similarity in the traffic patterns of Wyoming and New York.

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority

Smart Mirror in action

Each of the 1,600 test vehicles will feature a “smart review mirror” to go along with a short-range radio and two antennas. The smart review mirror can communicate a variety of alerts to the driver. The mirrors can tell drivers when traffic has slowed, if there’s a driver going the wrong way, changes in the speed limit, and a variety of other alerts. The in-car technology is powered by Brandmotion. Brandmorion is working with Savari, Commsignia and Sirus XM to provide the onboard units.

Technology company Siemens has been tasked with the development of roadside communication devices to help facilitate the network. All the data will be aggregated at Tampa’s Transportation Management Center.

It will be interesting to see the early returns next year. Advanced driver-assist technology is changing the way we commute and perhaps creating new-found efficiency.