June's top stories: Google buys traffic app, Balfour Beatty's Hong Kong contract
Google acquires Israel-based crowd-sourced traffic navigation app Waze for $1.03bn and Balfour Beatty's Hong Kong subsidiary wins a £722m road design and construction contract. Road-traffic-technology.com wraps the major headlines from June 2013.
Google has finalised the acquisition of Israel-based crowd-sourced traffic navigation app Waze in a deal that is reportedly worth $1.03bn.
The deal included several months of acquisition talks with other major companies, which are thought to have been Apple, Facebook and Yahoo.
Google is set to improve Google Maps by adding several traffic update features offered by Waze. It also plans to enhance Waze services with its own search capabilities.
Gammon Construction, the Hong Kong subsidiary of Balfour Beatty, has been awarded a major road design and construction contract worth HK$8.66bn (£722m).
The HKSAR Highways contract, which marks the largest solo civil engineering contract ever awarded to Gammon, involves the construction of the Southern Connection Viaduct Section of the Tuen Mun - Chek Lap Kok Link (TM-CLKL) in Hong Kong.
Balfour Beatty chief executive Andrew McNaughton said the company has the capability to design, construct, manage and finance major infrastructure projects across the globe.
The UK Department for Transport has announced a new £165m road project fund to ease traffic congestion in England.
The proposed investment is the second tranche of funding from the £190m Local Pinch Point Fund, which was announced in December 2012, adding 62 new schemes and bringing the total number of schemes financed under the fund to 72.
Together with local contributions, the total investment is around £300m.
The US Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has broken ground on the $1.3bn Downtown Crossing - the second half of the Ohio River Bridges project.
Scheduled to be completed in late 2016, the project involves the construction of a new bridge that widens I-65 from seven to 12 lanes over the Ohio River in downtown Louisville and the reconstruction of Kennedy Interchange where I-64, I-65, and I-71 converge.
The new bridge and its counterpart in Louisville's East End will be the region's first new bridges in more than 50 years.
Kapsch TrafficCom North America has secured a five-year contract from Canadian Tolling Company International (Cantoll) to supply next-generation technology for its TDMA V6 Interior Transponder for 407 ETR, located in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) of Ontario, Canada.
The total value of the contract over the five-year period is estimated to be $30m.
Kapsch, through its subsidiary Kapsch TrafficCom Canada, is expected to commence delivery of the new transponders in Q3 2014.
The Public Works Authority (Ashghal) in Qatar has awarded engineering consultancy firm Hyder a $112m contract for the design and construction supervision of a new section of the Doha Expressway.
The contract for 'pre and post-contract professional consultancy services' is divided into four separate projects for concept design review, preliminary and detailed design, construction contract preparation, tender services and construction supervision services.
Hyder will provide services for the P22 Al Khor Bypass in north-east Qatar, which includes 35km of expressway with four major junctions, three running lanes and one hard shoulder on either side of the central median.
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has shortlisted Orlando-based I-4 Mobility Partners, a consortium of global infrastructure investors, developers, constructors and operators, among the other teams to submit a detailed bid for the $2bn I-4 Ultimate Project.
The winning consortium for the public-private partnership project will design, build, finance and operate the new highway section over an expected concession period of 40 years.
This project also includes vital interchange improvements for this section of interstate that serves as a key tourist route with an annual average daily traffic volume of 175,000 vehicles.
The billion-dollar Hume Highway duplication project has been completed with the construction of a new bypass in Holbrook, New South Wales (NSW).
The newly-built bypass, the final stage in the upgrade of the inter-city highway, is scheduled to open to traffic in July.
It is estimated that nearly 130,000 Australians have at some point worked on the highway project, which was built over a period of almost 50 years.
Crowd-sourcing via smartphone apps and GPS devices is revolutionising the way in which traffic information is collated and analysed.
A careful backyard observer would notice that ants never get caught up in their own traffic.