Intelligent Transportation System

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Intelligent Transportation Systems help meet the transportation challenges:
A broad range of diverse technologies, known collectively as intelligent transportation systems (ITS), holds the answer to many of our transportation problems. ITS is comprised of a number of technologies, including information processing, communications, control, sand electronics. Joining these technologies to our transportation system will save lives, save time, and save money.
The future of ITS is promising. Yet, ITS itself, is anything but futuristic. Already, real systems, products and services are at work throughout the world. Still, the wide-scale development and deployment of these technologies represents a true revolution in the way we, as a nation, think about transportation. While many aspects of our lives have been made more pleasant and productive through the use of advanced technologies, we have somehow been content to endure a transportation system whose primary controlling technology is the four-way traffic signal -- a technology that has changed little since it was first invented. It has taken transportation a long time to catch on, but now the industry is sprinting to catch up.
Fulfilling the need for a national system that is both economically sound and environmentally efficient requires a new way of looking at -- and solving -- our transportation problems. The decades-old panacea of simply pouring more and more concrete neither solves our transportation problems, nor meets the broad vision of an efficient transportation system.
Traffic accidents and congestion take a heavy toll on lives, productivity, and wastes energy. ITS enables people and goods to move more safely and efficiently through a state-of-the-art, intermodal transportation system.
Interest in ITS comes from the problems caused by traffic congestion and a synergy of new information technology for simulation, real-time control, and communications networks. Traffic congestion has been increasing worldwide as a result of increased motorization, urbanization, population growth, and changes in population density. Congestion reduces efficiency of transportation infrastructure and increases travel time, air pollution, and fuel consumption.
The United States, for example, saw large increases in both motorization and urbanization starting in the 1920s that led to migration of the population from the sparsely populated rural areas and the densely packed urban areas into suburbs. The industrial economy replaced the agricultural economy, leading the population to move from rural locations into urban centers. At the same time, motorization was causing cities to expand because motorized transportation could not support the population density that the existing mass transit systems could. Suburbs provided a reasonable compromise between population density and access to a wide variety of employment, goods, and services that were available in the more densely populated urban centers. Further, suburban infrastructure could be built quickly, supporting a rapid transition from a rural/agricultural economy to an industrial/urban economy.
Recent governmental activity in the area of ITS ? specifically in the United States ? is further motivated by the perceived need for homeland security. Many of the proposed ITS systems also involve surveillance of the roadways, which is a priority of homeland security. Funding of many systems comes either directly through homeland security organizations or with their approval. Further, ITS can play a role in the rapid mass evacuation of people in urban centers after large casualty events such as a result of a natural disaster or threat. Much of the infrastructure and planning involved with ITS parallels the need for homeland security systems.
In the developing world, the migration of people from rural to urbanized habitats has progressed differently. Many areas of the developing world have urbanized without significant motorization and the formation of suburbs. In areas like Santiago, Chile, a high population density is supported by a multimodal system of walking, bicycle transportation, motorcycles, buses, and trains. A small portion of the population can afford automobiles, but the automobiles greatly increase the congestion in these multimodal transportation systems. They also produce a considerable amount of air pollution, pose a significant safety risk, and exacerbate feelings of inequities in the society.
Other parts of the developing world, such as China, remain largely rural but are rapidly urbanizing and industrializing. In these areas a motorized infrastructure is being developed alongside motorization of the population. Great disparity of wealth means that only a fraction of the population can motorize, and therefore the highly dense multimodal transportation system for the poor is cross-cut by the highly motorized transportation system for the rich. The urban infrastructure is being rapidly developed, providing an opportunity to build new systems that incorporate ITS at early stages.

In India out of the total population of 1027 million as on 1st March, 2001, about 742 million live in rural areas and 285 million in urban areas.
The percentage decadal growth of population in rural and urban areas during the 1990-2000 decade was 17.9 and 31.2 percent respectively.

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The Ministry of Urban Development is in the process of framing a National Urban Transport Policy (NUTP) to address the various issues involved in urban transport

????????? The objective of this policy is to ensure safe, affordable, quick, comfortable, reliable and sustainable access for the growing number of city residents to jobs, education, recreation and such other needs within our cities.
This is sought to be achieved by incorporating urban transportation as an important parameter at the urban planning stage rather than being a consequential requirement; bringing about a more equitable allocation of road space - with people, rather than vehicles, as its main focus; investing in transport systems that encourage greater use of public transport and non-motorized modes instead of personal motor vehicles; reducing pollution levels through changes in traveling practices, better enforcement, stricter norms, technological improvements; building capacity (institutional and manpower) to plan for sustainable urban transport; and promoting the use of cleaner technologies.
According to the 2001 census, there are 35 metropolitan cities with million plus population. There are eight cities in the country with more than 3 million population, which include Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Kolkata. Among all the States and Union territories, the National Capital Territory of Delhi is most urbanized with 93 percent urban population and will be hosting the 2010 Commonwealth Games, which is expected to give a big boost to ITS technologies and services. 

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