The baseline data that informs the modelling process requires to be updated on a regular basis to ensure that the information is still relevant and reflects the current position on the City Region’s growth of developments and associated transport network to allow predictions of changes required to the built environment based on traditional gravity model principles. The challenges of appropriate data collection on an increasingly congested road network causes significant issues in keeping the model up to date. New technologies for use in data collection are becoming available but it is only in recent times that these methods have reached a point of providing robust data and are becoming more cost effective. There is an opportunity to use various forms of digital information capture devices to support data collection which will allow the Strategic Transport Model to be updated and maintained more easily. Having up to date and current data will also enable ‘current’ movement patterns and the impacts of changes to be assessed more easily and quickly.
With the need to re-establish a new transport hierarchy following the opening of the AWPR the information gathered will allow early assessment of the impact of this significant additional road infrastructure on movements and any subsequent changes made through traffic management and vehicle routing strategies.
This offers the opportunity to establish a continuous improvement cycle, using data captured to continually refine the evidence and information used to support future decision making and reducing costs and disruption of using conventional techniques i.e. once a system of data collection has been developed and put in place there is an ability to collect data on an on-going basis without significant investment beyond the initial set up cost.