The city of Guadalajara, in the state of Jalisco, Mexico is expanding its traffic camera network, according to local radio station 1070AM. Guadalajara is the second largest city in Mexico and the tenth largest in Latin America.
Director of Road Safety for the Secretary of Mobility (SEMOV, in Spanish Secretaría de Movilidad), Francisco Javier Poe Morales, announced the expansion. “Our statistics show where there are higher speeds on our roadways, there are more accidents and as a result more injuries and deaths. We believe 99% of these are caused by speeding, which these new cameras aim to control.”
With a metropolitan population of 4.3 million people and an ever-expanding traffic grid, the government is working to stanch a significant increase in accidents related to speeding in specific areas and highways. It also hopes to push more drivers into using the well-developed public transit system, SITEUR (Sistema de Tren Eléctrico Urbano), Spanish for Urban Electrical Train System. The system provides rapid transit service within Guadalajara and the neighboring municipalities of Zapopan and Tlaquepaque.
Guadalajara has been at the vanguard of a number of progressive transportation initiatives and was named the first “Smart City” in Mexico for its innovative development approach.
Locations of the New Enforcement
Some of the points the new radars will be installed these new radars are Avenida Lopez Mateos at the height of the Rioja and San Agustin, Lazaro Cardenas and March 18, Vallarta and Rafael Sanzio, Columbus and Patria, the tunnel Patria and Avenida Vallarta, Puente Matute Remus, Periferico Oriente in CUTonalá and the junction with the road to San José del Castillo and Periferico and the road to Chapala.
The traffic cameras will be undergoing tests for the next two months before being activated for enforcement.
“Right now the system is going to be on trial. Drivers will see if they have exceeded the speed limits,” Morales explained. “But will they be charged? No, but then it will be running in due time. We will inform people from May 1, or possibly in April, when it will be active but we do not know what date we will authorize the system to begin to cite.”
A first wave of cameras in 2012 saw a documented 40% decline in traffic accidents, according to ITS International, a publication focused on Intelligent Transportation Systems based in England.
According to ITS, “Jalisco’s Traffic Safety Agency (TSA) established the state’s strategy for reducing traffic speed, with the support of the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO). Guidance from PAHO led to a two pronged attack; addressing the issue of speeding with technology and educational initiatives.
“Initial work focused on amalgamating and improving all traffic signalling on Guadalajara’s orbital highway. ‘We also set new more appropriate speed limits where the road design and conditions necessitated and we established our own special traffic sign for speed enforcement,’ Jalisco State Minister for transport and traffic Diego Monraz says.”
Monraz added, “Secondly, we established a financial strategy for the project. Government funding is not commonly available for financing such infrastructure, so we had to devise our own strategy to make it work. With this knowledge we designed a project and its specifications with the aim of it becoming self-financing within two years. This was the only way to make the project feasible.”
ITS says that for design and delivery of the scheme, TSA assembled a team consisting of Mexican traffic control systems company Autotraffic and the international enforcement specialist Jenoptik.
“For defining the systems, we focused on solutions by providers with high experience in Mexico and internationally – not just for the technology, but with the service provided with it viewed as equally important,” says Monraz. “The offer from Autotraffic and Jenoptik was a good fit with these requirements and suited the financial stipulations of the contract.”
“A multi-sectoral approach, including the public, is important, as is determination of a financial structure to fund the project,” Moraz added in the ITS article. “The state of Jalisco had the necessary authority and capability to operate the enforcement program itself, but contracting a service provider held two advantages: it prevented misuse of the equipment for uses other than enforcement; and it made possible more efficient use of the administration’s human resources.”
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