Blip Systems’ technology provides a seamless picture of traffic flow information between the airport and Auckland’s central business district
Auckland Airport, New Zealand, has embarked on a wide-ranging and “world-first” combined passenger-flow and road-traffic measurement project, with the goal of obtaining a cohesive view of movement patterns, in real-time.
Last year, the airport handled 19 million passengers and with usage expected to reach 40 million annually by 2044, it realised a system was needed to guide daily and long-term operational decisions, maximise capacity, and improve passenger and traffic flow.
As well as detailed, up-close analysis of ongoing issues, it also needed a way to quickly act when things start to bottleneck.
The airport already had a mass of intelligence on passenger movement inside the terminals, from its BlipTrack solution; however, it had no real-time intelligence on the road network to and from the airport.
With several traffic monitoring projects in New Zealand using the same technology, infrastructure consultant Beca was commissioned to extend the solution across the airport’s road infrastructure. This provides the airport with a seamless picture of traffic flow information between the airport and Auckland CBD (central business district).
Outside the airport, the solution measures traffic flow between the CBD and the airport, providing real-time data on reliability, vehicle counts and travel time.
It provides data about the mix of staff and passengers using the park and ride facility, enabling the airport to better understand the performance and regularly review how they can improve their facilities. This information is also analysed to help planning decisions for road network maintenance and infrastructure projects.
“The intelligence that BlipTrack is delivering has already proved its value, by providing automated alerts on delays on vulnerable corridors, real-time counts on traffic flows and delays, and intelligence on the origin and destination of vehicle movements into the airport and to terminals and car parks,” said Richard Young, senior associate at Beca.
The New Zealand Traffic Agency (NZTA) also uses the technology in addition to radar and wi-fi sensors to make informed traffic management decisions and has allowed for the implementation of a number of initiatives to improve traffic flow to the airport.
This includes optimising traffic signal timings and, combined with the recent opening of the new constructed Waterview connection, claims it has resulted in significant travel time cuts to and from the airport from the CBD and West Auckland.
In addition, the real-time and historic BlipTrack data enables NZTA, via its new RideMate app, to display live travel times between the CBD and airport, as well as informing about days with high risk of congestion.
“BlipTrack was a critical investment. The data has provided valuable insight into our operational performance across both our assets and processes,” added Mark Croudace, manager – operations at Auckland International Airport.
“Most importantly, it has enabled us to have meaningful conversations with our key operational stakeholders and vendors, as we collectively seek to improve the passenger experience.”
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