How Abu Dhabi will use big data to create smart cycling infrastructure – News

By measuring cycle traffic, city planners can optimize routes and amenities that can support daily activities

Photo provided

Published: Wed 23 March 2022, 06:26 PM

As Abu Dhabi aims to become a global cycling hub, big data can be used to create smart, safe and secure cycling infrastructure, a leading expert has said.

“We all know that data is essential for smart cities. Having data on cycle route safety, conditions, usage frequency and performance can help prioritize interventions and be a tool for city planners and engineers to become more data-driven. By measuring cycle traffic, city planners can optimize routes and amenities that support daily activities. It makes cycling safer, more efficient and more enjoyable,” said Irene McAleese, co-founder of UK-based See.Sense, which strives to make cycling safer and smarter through using sensors and AI fusion technology.

McAleese participated in a panel discussion on smart cities and the use of technology held at Expo 2020 Dubai. She noted that integrating smart solutions into everyday cycling is a lot easier than it looks.

McAleese, co-founder of UK-based See.Sense.  Photo provided

McAleese, co-founder of UK-based See.Sense. Photo provided

“It can be as simple as cyclists installing a geolocation sensor on their bikes. Cities like Dublin, Antwerp and London have all been able to see bicycle traffic thanks to Smart Cycling projects involving the installation of such devices on bicycles. By understanding how people move through the city and identifying origin and destination patterns, entire infrastructure networks can be assessed and Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) applications – such as more optimal timing traffic light changes – can be promoted,” she told Khaleej. Time.

McAleese isn’t surprised by Abu Dhabi’s “Bike City” tag, and is impressed with initiatives like Bike Abu Dhabi, Loop and Velodrome, and plans to expand the bike network to over 1,000km.

“Abu Dhabi has made impressive investments in its cycling infrastructure in recent years.”

She pointed out that smart cycling infrastructure makes cycling easier.

“It helps to understand where high traffic areas for cyclists are, identify the average speed of cyclists on specific roads and areas, and can even record where there have been accidents, helping to mitigate incidents. future. This can also benefit motorists. If there is a particular intersection where cyclists and motorists are jostling for space, planners can understand it and design appropriate solutions: whether it is cycle lanes, suggesting alternative routes for cyclists, or designing additional measures.

McAleese pointed out that the introduction of smart cycling technologies will improve Abu Dhabi’s cycling infrastructure.

“One of the key smart cycling technologies offered by various entities is to have individual geo-trackers for each bike, showing their speed, movement, road conditions and any other feedback from the rider. Through this, cities can better understand their cycling network and better understand where improvements are needed. This information can enable transport planners and engineers to make informed plans and policy decisions, thereby improving existing infrastructure. As a result, such devices can bring a tangible improvement to cycling in cities around the world, including Abu Dhabi,” she added.

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