Work is on to develop system that will integrate GIS, traffic data and road work progress
The Highways Department is working on an application which will enable users to get all the information they need about road routes in the State. It will allow users to choose the best possible route, by displaying the traffic situation on those roads. Additionally, the application will inform the user if there is any ongoing or proposed road work on the chosen route.
Sources said the interface is a part of the Electronic Project, Administration, Traffic, Highway Assets and Information Management System (e-Pathai), which integrates GIS (Geographic Information System), road projects, human resources, finance management system and road management system. It was launched recently by the Chief Minister.
“Since our data on roads and works will get updated on a daily basis, we will be able to provide such inputs to road users. But before that, we have to update the data which has been manually collected using the Road Measurement Data Acquisition System (ROMDAS). Of the 62,017 km of roads under the control of the department, data for around 21,000 km has been recorded,” a source said. Data for all 1,300 major bridges have already been collected.
The ROMDAS equipment, imported from New Zealand, will record bumps, potholes, cracks, surface-level cross section of the road and fix GPS points. Using the data on cracks and bumps, the roughness or smoothness of the road would be estimated.
Based on the traffic count, axle load, condition of the road, its category, and after comparing them with standards in the Indian Roads Congress, the works will be prioritised. It will also help assess the financial requirement of the works. Using the software, 2,477 km of roads have already been identified and the plans have been sent to the Central government, seeking external funding.
Presently, the website of the Highways Department has other components that can be accessed by the public. These include the list of roads in each circle, lists of approved and on-going works and strip maps of roads. Strip maps contain kilometre-wise components of roads such as culverts, bridges, width of carriageway and shoulder and junctions. The public can access these facilities at www.tnhighways.org through the link for Road Management Systems.
The total cost of the project is Rs. 12 crore and funding has been provided by the World Bank. .
Under this project, over 430 offices of the Highways department throughout the State have been networked and 1,770 personal computers connected to 10 servers.