An upgrade to the UTMC system at J11 of the M4 posed Reading council’s traffic engineering team a significant challenge, made particularly difficult considering the current government spending review. The requirement was simple: the new traffic controller needed an IP connection back to the central server at council offices. An RS1000 circuit existed and the original intention was to use this to facilitate the connection.
However, for the leased line supplier to provide Ethernet rather than serial connectivity, an upgrade program at a substantial capital cost would have been required per circuit plus a secondary not in-significant increase in annual circuit fees. The concern was that if this per circuit capital cost was up-scaled to the required 30 UTMC sites, with the additional corresponding annual fees, the resulting expenditure would have had a large impact on the council traffic budget for Reading council.
An alternative solution was obviously required. IT4Automation was approached to help identify a different approach that used their existing serial provision to provide sufficient IP bandwidth for the new UTMC system. This new solution gave a 90% saving on the capital cost of the original Ethernet solution and meant no increase in the annual circuit charges.
Moxa hardware has been selected by IT4A to provide communications at J11 for it’s flexibility and reliability. Since piloting this solution, Reading council’s traffic engineering team and IT4A have been reviewing all the communication services in use across the Reading council traffic infrastructure; specifically looking at ways to reduce costs, increase flexibility and provide a modern networking platform, upon which modern UTMC and other ITS services can coexist.
The partnership with ITS communication specialist IT4A has proved invaluable in enabling Reading council to evolve its systems, now and into the future.
Reading council’s UTMC network manager, Simon Beasley, was happy with the new partnership: “During the J11 upgrade program IT4A not only provided an extremely cost-effective solution but also facilitated its installation on schedule. We are delighted with the results and are pleased that IT4A are now the preferred supplier for both hardware and its application to Reading council for our ITS programs.”