Columbus, Ohio announces its Connected Vehicle Environment

One of the most exciting trends in transportation technology is the idea of a ‘smart city’: a city with connected infrastructure that can communicate with private and public vehicles, buildings, electricity grids, government agencies, and citizens. Smart cities leverage realtime data generated by IoT devices and advanced analytics to aid policymakers working to solve social problems like traffic congestion, air pollution, and crime.

So far, smart city infrastructures have been associated with wealthy, dense, high-tech cities like Singapore and Dubai, but last week Columbus, Ohio, became the latest metropolis to launch plans to become a smart city. City officials said that Columbus would move forward with its Connected Vehicle Environment, set to go live in July 2020. The Connected Vehicle Environment is funded by a $40M U.S. Department of Transportation grant awarded to the city of Columbus when it won the Smart City Challenge in 2016. 

“The CVE project is one of the nine projects in the Smart Columbus program and is a significant enabler to other technologies delivered through the other eight projects. The CVE project will integrate smart traveler applications, automated vehicles, connected vehicles, and smart sensors into its transportation network by focusing on deploying CV infrastructure and CV applications,” according to Columbus’ Concept of Operations report. 

“We feel transportation should be connected, autonomous, shared and electric,” said Mandy Bishop, deputy director of public services in Columbus, said in a July 25 webinar outlining the project. 

Last month, McKinsey Global Institute released a research report titled “Smart cities: digital solutions for a more livable future”, which found that cities could use smart technologies to improve key quality-of-life indicators by 10-30%. McKinsey defined smart city technology as having three layers: the physical layer of technology, which includes devices like smartphones and sensors; the software layer of applications translating raw data into alerts, insights, and action; and the human layer of users in cities, companies, and the public. 

At a physical level, the scope of the Connected Vehicle Environment project entails 113 roadside units at signalized intersections and 1,800 onboard units in participating private, emergency, transit, and freight vehicles. Planned software applications will handle vehicle-to-vehicle safety, vehicle-to-infrastructure safety, and vehicle-to-infrastructure mobility solutions. Finally, the usage layer “will capture, relate, store, and respond to data generated by the infrastructure, used by the applications for traffic management.”

The roadside units will be deployed along seven major roads in Columbus that are associated with a disproportionate number of automobile accidents. Columbus’ Connected Vehicle Environment is similar to a project in Tampa Bay that saw about 1,600 private drivers use connected devices on the Lee Roy Selman Expressway. Although the over all number of devices is fairly large, the Connected Vehicle Environment is really an experimental, first-stage implementation of smart city technology, a platform that other capabilities can be built on top of. 

McKinsey’s report lists a much wider range of use cases for transportation: realtime public transit information; digital public transit payment; autonomous vehicles; predictive maintenance of transportation infrastructure; intelligent traffic signals; congestion pricing; demand-based microtransit; smart parking; e-hailing (private and pooled); car sharing; bike sharing; integrated multimodal information; realtime road navigation; parcel load pooling; and smart parcel lockers. 

Columbus is focusing on automotive traffic, an aspect of quality-of-life with some of the biggest potential improvements from smart city technology. McKinsey estimates that emergency response time, for instance, can be improved 20-35%, and that “by 2025, cities that deploy smart mobility applications could cut commuting times by 15–20 percent on average, with some people enjoying even larger reductions.”

As data scientists and anyone who’s worked in analytics knows, though, ‘smart’ technology can only be as smart as the people and organizations using it. “Using technology to transform urban environments in a more meaningful way will require new thinking about governance. Technology is only as effective as the entity that puts it to work,” wrote the authors of McKinsey’s report. “City government has a dual role to play. It has to execute some intelligent solutions on its own, and it has to orchestrate and enable the evolution of a broader ecosystem [of public and private partners].”

Ultimately, smart city technology can optimize the use of existing transportation infrastructure, removing friction from the movement of people and goods in urban freight markets that are currently congested, inaccessible, and overpriced. 

One Comment

  1. According to the World Bank report Rapid urbanization and motorization: Cities will be home to some 5.4 billion residents by 2050, equivalent to 2/3 of the projected global population. The number of vehicles on the road will double to reach 2 billion by 2050.
    With more than 70 percent of the world’s population expected to live in cities by 2050, urban resilience has never been more important — or more urgent.
    Also according to the RAC, a driver recovering from being dazzled for five seconds while driving at 60mph, would cover a distance of 134m – more than the length of a football pitch.
    Among the 88% who think at least some modern car headlights are too bright, 49% claim to dazzled by headlights in their rear view mirror.
    66% of respondents say they now struggle to tell if oncoming lights are on full or dipped beam, while 68% admit to having difficulty telling whether some approaching vehicles have their indicators on due to the brightness of the headlights.
    RAC road safety spokesman, said: “The intensity and brightness of some new car headlights is clearly causing difficulty for other road users.
    The main reason for this has not happened to the place of installation of the night lighting system currently used in all vehicles in the foreground directly, any practical development since the invention of the first car in 1886 to now, Where the light of, like a shot with random force in all directions even to sky, without control at a speed of 300,000 m/s to hit the optic nerve force of the person or animals are not qualified to bear this strong blow and cannot tolerate and temporary blindness is the main reason to increase nighttime accidents.
    Because now there is no any control in steering the light away from the eyes of others, the only control available now is to turn on the lighting or stop.
    I introduced a patented for night lighting system currently used in all vehicles to reduce night accidents, to enhance night vision and control the orientation of light (where only control available now is to turn the light on or off) for development of night lighting system currently used in all vehicles to reduce night accidents, and environmental of light pollution, there has been no development since invention of first car. Is done by creating, Projector (Extra Spotlights through Xenon, Laser or LED bulbs with fibers-lights) Innovation For all vehicles. With installation inside body vehicle to the rear is far from the front, to control such glow on, then redirected to the front for radiate through fiber-lights and other luminous elements, They are installed inside the projector at specific angles and degrees to control the direction of light away from the vision of others. As well installation of light sensors on the light output of the projector at front of the vehicle and another sensor in the level of the driver’s view of the opposite vehicles for successive control of high light rise under level of sensitivity in level of vision of other driver.
    A mobile communication system is created between the lighting sensors to control the elevation of the light only to a horizontal level far from the eyes of others.
    Light control stops the diffraction, of light reflection from snow when it falls and covers everything on the roads with a white crystalline layer, considering that the crystalline ice property becomes a powerful reflector of light from everything on the road collides with the strong night lighting system now used directly in all vehicles where it starts The light is a random force in all directions without control and the road becomes ignited, causing severe interference to the driver’s vision and all those on the road. The practical solution available now is to control the steering of the light in front of the vehicle only, at a level near the ground to reduce the reflections of light on all places covered by snow; this is only available at using invention.
    Also when the fog suddenly falls, the powerful foreground lighting used in all the vehicles becomes very confusing because the fog is made up of small atoms of water vapor. When the light collides with it, Which consists of contiguous straight photons at speeds of 300,000 m / s, to collide with steam atoms and move them between them at the same speed and as a result of the heat of friction between them are divided into parts moving very quickly to become a curtain prevents vision, so we find the fog moving at the brightness of light and then evaporates. Therefore, the invention controls the high level of light from the Earth so that the movement of fog (water vapor atoms) is far from the level of view of others.
    This invention to reduce the killing of one and a quarter million human beings annually (3500 daily) in road accidents, Even if the accident reduction rate is 1% the lives of 35 people will be preserved daily.
    It should be used now when two vehicles are encountered while walking opposite in the direction, especially on the dark narrow roads,
    When approach each other the strong headlights become very painful because they cause severe interference to the vision, as they approach each other, leading to a complete loss of vision and forcing the two drivers to turn off the strong lights and walk only in the light of small lights so that each car can Is a way away from the collision of the two vehicles and without disturbing the vision of the road to each of the leaders of the two vehicles to the other where this causes the loss of focus to make a decision and the right place. These small lights do not help them to identify the road completely security and not see everything to a distance of not more than five meters only, when approaching the two vehicles and the emergence of anything suddenly or a slight deviation in a second is the cause of the accident, so the installation of additional powerful lamps from xenon or laser or LED with fiber-lights to increase the power of light and control Direction is a practical solution where the center of the dazzling light (searchlights and bulbs) is hidden inside the body of the car back from the bottom away from the front with the use of the body of the car itself umbrella to bring light in the level of horizontal close to the ground.
    So, now must be benefit of the space below buses for passenger and Heavy transport vehicles.

    Also most important problem in night lighting system used now all vehicles is one of important reasons for spread of light pollution to the environment, As a result of the start of light with random force without control in directions even to the sky. Intended optical pollution damage caused by non-natural lighting at night and the impact of the sky darkness, effects of artificial light at night birds, animals, plants, fungi environmental regulations and high temperature of the earth…
    What is Light Pollution?
    Most of us are familiar with air, water, and land pollution, but did you know that light can also be a pollutant? The inappropriate or excessive use of artificial light – known as light pollution – can have serious environmental consequences for humans, wildlife, and our climate.
    By joining IDA you can make a difference in protecting our Planet, saving billions of dollars in wasted energy, and connecting future generations with our legacy of starry skies.
    Mohamed Metwalli Khalifa Saleh (Mohamed Saleh)

John Paul Hampstead

John Paul conducts research on multimodal freight markets and holds a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Michigan. Prior to building a research team at FreightWaves, JP spent two years on the editorial side covering trucking markets, freight brokerage, and M&A.