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iFlorida Shines the Nation's Spotlight on Florida's Transportation System
L.A Griffin
Manager, Expressway Operations
Orlando Orange County Expressway Authority (OOCEA)

Earlier this year, the Federal Highway Administration awarded an Intelligent Transportation System “model deployment” grant to the state of Florida to demonstrate the value of transportation system conditions information. Florida DOT competed against 16 other states in winning this highly innovative model deployment grant, officially titled the “Surface Transportation Security and Reliability Information System Model Deployment,” and proposed a $21 million project, called “iFlorida.” OOCEA is one of many partners working with Florida DOT to bring this project to fruition. This article provides an overview of the iFlorida project.

Project Elements
Over the past few months, we have been refining the concepts proposed in our application to FHWA to deliver the project in the most expeditious, cost-effective and risk-managed manner. When completed, key accomplishments of iFlorida will include:

  • The monitoring of travel times on all limited access highways in the Orlando area;
  • The monitoring of travel times on roughly half of the key arterial mileage and video on monitoring of all key intersections in the Orlando area;
  • The complete monitoring of the SR 528 evacuation corridor, which is one of the state’s five approved emergency contra flow (one-way) corridors;
  • A statewide reporting system aggregating in one system significant safety and capacity restricting conditions along the Florida Intrastate Highway System
  • A Statewide 511 traveler information telephone system and enhancements to the existing Central Florida 511 system to include all monitored roads, transit and airport information;
  • A Statewide traveler information web portal and enhancements to the Central Florida regional web site to include all available information;
  • A one-stop source for third parties that wish to access and utilize iFlorida data, either for real-time or historical applications;
  • Enhanced weather information specifically tailored for transportation uses, available to both agency operators and the traveling public; and
  • Security monitoring on two critical bridges in Florida.

For more detailed and current information on iFlorida, please visit the iFlorida project web site at www.iflorida.net.

Project Schedule
Initiated on May 1, 2003, there is a two-year design and deployment phase, followed by a two-year operational evaluation period in which the cooperative agreement between FDOT and FHWA dictates that all project elements shall be operational between May 1, 2005 and April 30, 2007, to support the national evaluation that will be ongoing during this period. Afterwards we anticipate that most of the iFlorida project elements will become permanent fixtures supporting transportation operations in Florida. By May 2005, iFlorida will be serving users of Florida’s transportation system by providing safer and more reliable travel.

 


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