TfL awards Sopra Steria £6.5m deal for new control system
Software will be able to ingest more data on congestion, weather, roadworks and bus performance
Credit: David Holt/CC BY 2.0
Transport for London (TfL) has selected Sopra Steria to develop a new control system for managing its roads in a £6.5m deal.
TfL claims that the software will be able to present a clearer picture of what’s happening on London’s roads, as it can ingest more data about congestion, bus performance, weather and roadworks, enabling TfL to respond more swiftly to incidents and keep the transport network flowing.
It suggests that this formed part of a number of upgrades planned in the coming years to help reduce road danger, and tackle pollution and congestion in London.
Sopra Steria was formed in 2014 through the merger of Sopra Group SA and Groupe Steria SCA, with its primary focus on consulting services, outsourcing services and systems integration.
Meanwhile, TfL is responsible for managing 580km of London’s busiest roads, as well as 6,000 traffic lights, tunnels and some of the capital’s bridges.
The two organisations will now work together to develop the system, which will be owned by TfL. TfL hopes it will give those manging the road network, a single, unified view of everything happening on the network. It believes that the software would be able to analyse multiple sources of information in order to provide TfL staff with incident alerts. This would help the organisation to relay important information about incidents to local councils, emergency services, customers and companies on the TfL network more speedily.
Glynn Barton, TfL’s director of network management, said that the organisation was working to completely overhaul the way it manages London’s road network as it tackles issues such as poor air quality, road danger and congestion.
“Our world-leading work with Sopra Steria will enable us to respond to incidents on the roads much more quickly, keeping the roads safe and clear and helping to keep London moving,” he said.
This is the latest contract TfL has handed out as it bids to better manage its road network. In June 2018, it awarded a contract to Siemens to develop and install technology which would help it to control its traffic lights in response to incidents and conditions.
Recently, Sopra Steria's immigration contract with the Home Office was embroiled in controversy.
The organisation terminated its immigration advice service after an outcry from immigration lawyers who believed that the company being in charge of processing visa applications as well as offering legal advice would risk giving migrants the impression that their visa application would be treated more favourably if they took advice from a company connected to the process.
Meanwhile, last month, universities claimed that international students applying for UK visas were “paying through the nose for [a] woefully inadequate” service being provided by Sopra Steria.
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