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Mumbai-Pune Expressway : Delayed intelligent traffic system back on track

In order to make the expressway safer for commuters, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation decided, back in 2018, to set up an Intelligent Traffic Management System (ITMS) that would reduce accidents

The ITMS will have an average speed detection system at 39 locations, and lane discipline violation detection system at 34 locations. (Express photo by Narendra Vaskar)

The death of former MLC and Shiv Sangram Party founder Vinayak Mete in an accident on Sunday brought to the fore the issue of safety of the Mumbai-Pune Expressway. The 95-kilometre stretch is one of the busiest expressways of the state and handles about 60,000 vehicles per day. Since 2018, it has seen 337 fatal accidents in which 400 people lost their lives.

In order to make the expressway safer for commuters, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) decided, back in 2018, to set up an Intelligent Traffic Management System (ITMS) that would reduce accidents and ensure effective management and regulation of traffic, deterring high-speed and dangerous driving. In 2019, the MSRDC floated the tender for selection of a bidder for implementing the ITMS.

While the project didn’t move then, it got a fresh lease of life last year. “The tender got delayed due to a few issues, such as Covid and lockdown; however the process was expedited last year. The agency is now finalised and the work order has also been issued. It will take around 9-10 months for installation, and then for the system to go live after all the tests,” said an MSRDC official.

The work has been issued to Mumbai based Proc-tech Solutions Private Limited which will install the system and maintain it for the next ten years. The official cited above said the estimated cost of the project is Rs 340 crore and it will be a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model.

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The ITMS will have an average speed detection system at 39 locations, and lane discipline violation detection system at 34 locations. It will also have a weather monitoring system at 11 locations. The stretch will be under complete CCTV surveillance and there will be automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras to track the vehicles, along with high-tech mobile surveillance vans equipped with cameras, speed guns, and e-challan machines for penalising and displays.

“A Command and Control Center (CCC) will be at Lonavala apart from other centres for live monitoring the situation at the expressway which will enable it to send medical assistance in case of accidents,” an official said.

Incidentally, the driver of Vinayak Mete’s car had claimed that they had to wait for over an hour for medical help to arrive after the accident.

First published on: 16-08-2022 at 10:41:09 pm
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