UTMC - Achieving Improved Network Management and Control

UTMC - Achieving Improved Network Management and Control


B Radia, Department for Transport;



In 1997, the UK?s Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (DTLR) launched a five year £6M research programme to support development of open standards and new applications for urban traffic management with the aim of helping the market develop for the supply and use of Urban Traffic Management and Control (UTMC) systems. This paper reviews the achievements of the UTMC programme and the current demonstrator projects towards realising integrated open systems and the applications of UTMC in managing and controlling traffic in an urban network.

For many years, an important policy of many authorities was to minimise total network delay to vehicles. However, over time, different policies have evolved through initiatives such as Package Bids. Policies can now include:

* managing demand and congestion more effectively;

* influencing modal choice, route choice and when journeys are made;

* improving priority for buses and other public service vehicles;

* providing better and safer facilities for pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users;

* minimising delays for pedestrians and bus passengers;

* reducing vehicle emissions, noise and visual intrusion;

* traffic restraint in sensitive areas; and * improving further overall safety.

The Technical Specification for UTMC Systems has therefore been developed to support the existing and new traffic management needs of local authorities, by providing a flexible yet comprehensive

h4. Approach that could also reduce costs.

The demonstrator phase of the programme began in January 2001, taking the opportunity to consolidate the results of earlier research. For this phase of the programme, four cities around the UK (Preston, Reading, Stratford-upon-Avon and York) are implementing, in a pragmatic way, full-scale demonstrator projects based on the UTMC approach. All these sites have different characteristics and interests. Preston is aiming to achieve seamless travel through the exchange of data with the Highways Agency via the Travel Information Highway (TIH) and with bus operators. York is focussing on air quality management in zones around the city, while Reading?s focus is on travel information. Stratford is looking at traffic balance across arterial routes and improved city-centre parking management.


Association for European Transport