MMDA launches traffic monitoring website
A traffic monitoring system, which broadcasts information about traffic conditions, congestion and accidents, is an important part of a city’s road system. This is usually done via all-news radio channels. The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) used to broadcast traffic information on its 1206 kHz radio station.
Now, the MMDA has teamed up with TV5 on a website that displays real-time traffic information. Called Metro Manila Traffic Navigator, the website URL is: http://mmdatraffic.interaksyon.com/
TV5 news and information head Luchi Cruz-Valdes, MMDA chairman lawyer Francis N. Tolentino, and TV5 president and CEO lawyer Ray C. Espinosa signed an agreement for the system, and the site went live as a Beta version last Wednesday. According to TV5, the project was conceived to be consistent with President Benigno Aquino III’s initiative to promote Public-Private Partnership (PPP) programs.
While on Beta mode, the system will be updated from 0600 to 2200, with information coming in every 5 to 10 minutes. The website says that this will eventually be updated 24 hours a day.
The system monitors five major roads in Metro Manila: Edsa, C5, Quezon Avenue/España, Roxas Boulevard and SLEX. The streets are shown as lines and nodes, similar to a subway map. The site displays traffic as light, moderate or heavy, by intersection. On the road, you can fire up any phone with an Internet browser to see the grid (while safely stopped, of course).
The Traffic Navigator is a welcome addition to MMDA’s other methods of traffic information, such as their Twitter feed.
Whether it is genuinely useful depends on one’s route and comfort with taking alternate routes, but having the information on hand will at least allow motorists to make an informed decision. We are interested to see if cars with on-board Internet access will eventually be able to usefully display the MMDA website.
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