Webinar Recap: The Future of Real-Time Lane Closure Information with FDOT’s Olivia Townsend

Olivia Townsend, P.E., FDOT Construction Specialty Engineer, presenting in a webinar hosted by Roads&Bridges on real-time lane closure information systems.

The recent webinar on Roads and Bridges featuring Olivia Townsend, State Construction Specialty Engineer at the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), provided an illuminating insight into their innovative Lane Closure Notification System (LCNS). Powered by one.network, this system represents a significant leap in real-time traffic management and work zone safety.

Background of the Lane Closure Notification System

The LCNS started in June 2022 as a one-year pilot project and transitioned into a multi-year asset to Florida’s work zone safety vision. By August 2023, its success led to a contract renewal. The system primarily aims to communicate lane closure information to motorists via navigation applications like Google Maps and Waze. Its key benefits include:

  • Enhanced worker and motorist safety through advanced driver alerts.
  • Decreased congestion by offering alternate route options.
  • Improved travel time reliability.

The Process and Workflow

The LCNS operates by deploying roadside mobile applications, such as one.network, as well as smart work zone devices. This data is then aggregated inside of one.network and pushed to navigation providers, updating drivers in near real-time.

FDOT’s approach to implementing LCNS involved:

  • Intensive Training for Teams: FDOT and one.network implemented comprehensive training for Construction, Engineering, and Inspection (CEI) teams and worksite supervisors, ensuring they were well-versed in the new system’s functionalities and responsibilities.
  • User Access Management Coordination: A collaborative effort between district construction offices and state construction support was established to manage user access effectively, streamlining the workflow.
  • Real-Time Data Entry and Verification: Utilizing one.network’s smartphone application, worksite supervisors could input lane closures/openings in real-time. These entries were then transmitted to navigation providers within a remarkable five-minute window and immediately visible for CEIs to review in the one.network web app.
  • Robust Training and Enforcement Strategy: To guarantee the successful adoption of the system, FDOT and one.network conducted extensive outreach, offering both live, virtual and on-demand training sessions. This initiative emphasized the critical roles and responsibilities of all involved, focusing on realistic data quality reviews to maintain the accuracy and timeliness of lane closure information.

Wins and lessons from FDOTs LCNS Performance:

  • Processed 16,366 closures by June 2023.
  • 99% of closures were confirmed and transmitted to navigation providers.
  • 87% of closures closed within five minutes of the reported start time.
  • Over 50% of closures reopened using the one.network application.

A critical takeaway from the LCNS project is the necessity of early contractor adoption and coordination. This step proved essential for the system’s initial success, ensuring smooth integration and compliance. Equally important was the focus on data quality, particularly in providing realistic reviews of lane closure geometry and timings. These elements were pivotal in maintaining the system’s accuracy and reliability, key to its effectiveness and efficiency.

one.network’s Role: Live Link and Traffic Management

one. network’s Live Link and Traffic Management applications are vital in this project. Live Link facilitated the real-time communication of lane closures directly to navigation providers, while Traffic Management provided a comprehensive platform for managing these closures with accurate and timely data. This integration of one.network’s solutions into FDOT’s workflow exemplify the potential of digital traffic management tools in enhancing road safety and efficiency.

Impact and Moving Forward

Preliminary data suggests a downward trend in work zone-related crashes, highlighting the system’s positive impact. FDOT’s collaboration with one.network demonstrates the power of digital solutions in transforming road safety and traffic management.

As other states and regions seek to improve their traffic management systems, FDOT’s successful implementation of the LCNS serves as a benchmark. It’s a testament to the power of innovative technology like one.network’s solutions in making our roads safer and more efficient.

FDOT’s webinar with Roads and Bridges provided more than just a glimpse into a successful project; it offered a roadmap for future innovations in traffic management. With tools like one.network’s Live Link and Traffic Management, the possibilities for enhancing road safety and efficiency are boundless.

Are you ready to explore how one.network’s solutions can transform traffic management in your region? Schedule a meeting with us and join the journey towards safer, smarter, and more connected roadways.