Tag Archives: Highways England

Telent awarded Smart Highway contract

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Highway to the future.

Innovative service approach keeping the country’s traffic moving is about to get a whole lot smarter.

Congratulations from everyone at Co-Star to Telent for winning the Smart Higway contact.

Highways England has awarded a contract worth  nearly half a billion pounds to leading UK technology and network services company, telent Technology Services, to help keep England moving into the future.

Highways England today announced it has awarded the contract for the operation and management of NRTS (National Roads Telecommunication Services), a critical component of national infrastructure supporting the country’s 4,400 mile strategic road network, to telent Technology Services Ltd (telent).

The contract will see telent take over the current NRTS network and provide an end-to-end managed service from the 24-hour network operations centre at Quinton, Birmingham. Field services will transition from the current suppliers to telent, including current staff that will transfer under TUPE to join the telent team.

Additionally, telecommunications project works involving changes to and extensions of the network to support the government’s Road Investment Strategy, including telecommunications services supporting the rollout of smart motorways and expressways will transfer to telent.

From spring 2018, telent, together with its world class technology partners, will collaborate with Highways England to transform the NRTS network and roll-out innovative, world-class, carrier grade network technology, which will support the provision of new telecommunication services.  This will increase safety for road workers and users, help ensure that drivers and their passengers can travel with minimal delays, and facilitate the development of future communications-based services alongside the strategic road network.

telent CEO, Mark Plato, said: “This large, 7 year contract is an outstanding accomplishment. With telent’s proven capability designing, delivering and supporting England’s critical national infrastructure, we are uniquely positioned to support Highways England who we have had a relationship with for over 20 years.  We are excited to begin work transforming the NRTS network, ensuring we deliver a service that consistently upholds health and safety standards and delivers the required performance.

“Our technology innovation of NRTS will provide a world class, superfast network to support Highways England’s plans for upgrading the strategic road network.  The scale and capability of the transformed NRTS network will be on a par with all but the very largest ISPs’ networks, and this reflects telent’ proven track record of working with service providers to transform their networks.”

NRTS is used to connect Highways England’s seven regional control centres with over 30,000 roadside devices, including CCTV cameras, message signs, emergency roadside phones and smart motorway equipment. Today NRTS comprises approximately 6,000 miles of fibre and copper networks, 145 transmission stations and almost 5,000 roadside cabinets.

Highways England’s requirements for the new contract included effective service continuity and the ability to undertake a transformation programme without impacting on the service, whilst also reducing roadside maintenance activity. The upgraded programme will improve reliability, increase remote services, and support the introduction of new services such as wireless and IP CCTV.

Chief Information Officer at Highways England, Tony Malone said:

“We are pleased to announce the award of the second National Roads Telecommunications Service contract to telent Technology Services Ltd. With their proactive approach to innovation and collaboration, they will help Highways England deliver a service that will provide improvements in safety, customer service and delivery, as well as enable us to support emerging technologies such as connected vehicles and 5G.”

Source: Telent

Highways England’s intelligent network of the future

Cars of the future could be programmed to spot potholes on motorways and automatically transmit the information to Highways England to schedule repairs.

Connected car graphic image

In a vision of the future outlined today the government company said an intelligent network coupled with connected vehicles would improve how efficiently roads are maintained and at the same time improve safety. In another development drones could also be used to fly overhead and report back on incidents, improving response times.

In its Strategic Road Network Initial Report, published today (13 December 2017), the company says technology will play an increasingly major role in keeping people moving, and the country connected.

It also stresses the importance of keeping existing roads properly maintained, and that it does so in a way which minimises disruption to road users and local communities. The report will be used to inform the government’s next road investment strategy which begins in 2020.

Highways England Chief Executive, Jim O’Sullivan, said:

We are delivering a record £15 billion of government investment to give people safe, efficient and reliable journeys, and provide businesses with the links they need to prosper and grow.

Because people’s journeys are important to us we are setting out our high level aspirations which will help ensure the network continues to drive economic growth, jobs and prosperity, and keeps traffic moving today, and into the future.

We encourage people to read our report and feedback through the Department for Transport’s consultation, which is also launched today.

Since it was created in 2015, Highways England has completed 18 major road improvements and has a further 15 currently in construction.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said:

This government is making people’s journeys better, faster and safer to give people better access to jobs, schools and their community.

We are planning to spend more than ever before to upgrade England’s motorways and major A roads from 2020 through to 2025.

The Initial Report outlines eight aspirations for the next road period:

  • focus on operations, maintenance and renewals
  • build the smart motorway spine of the network
  • roll out expressways
  • undertake transformational investments
  • deliver a balanced programme
  • renew focus on small schemes
  • deliver through refined designated funds
  • prepare for the future

The Department for Transport has also today launched its consultation into Highways England’s Initial Report. Their consultation will run until Wednesday, 7 February 2018.

The results of it will be used by the department to help develop the next Road Investment Strategy which the government is expected to publish in 2019. It is then that detail on specific road projects will be outlined.

Source: Highways England