Traffic21 Weighs in on IBM Transportation Study

Feb 26, 2013

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Pittsburgh officials anxiously await transportation study results

Pittsburgh officials expect good things at minimal cost from a transportation study by technology giant IBM.

Six IBM experts from across the globe spent three weeks in Pittsburgh last year, scrutinizing transportation systems, and will provide the city a detailed report of their findings and recommendations early this year.

IBM provided the expertise, valued at $400,000, for free as part of its Smarter Cities Challenge grant program.

No one is sure what IBM might recommend.

The company offered a hint in October with preliminary findings that suggested expanding things such as robotic traffic lights in East Liberty and the Port Authority of Allegheny County's smart-card system for paying fares on buses and light-rail transit.

“What they're saying is, ‘You guys are actually advanced, because you've got a smart-card program, but here's a lot of things you can do to improve that smart-card system,' ” said Stan Caldwell, deputy executive director of Carnegie Mellon University's Traffic 21 program and T-Set University Transportation Centers.

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