KUALA LUMPUR: Major roads and highways in Malaysia may, one day, be controlled electronically to speed up the traffic flow.
At the same time, all vehicles – including small ones like the Kancil – could be fitted with a global positioning system (GPS) to guide motorists to their destinations.
These ideas, said Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu, could be made possible with the implementation of the intelligent transportation system (ITS) master plan soon.
He said the plan would recommend four strategic focuses: identification of proposed ITS projects, identification of strategic projects, designation of national ITS corridors and identification of priority areas.
The ITS includes devices such as electronic coordination of signal lights on local streets, large variable signs informing drivers of traffic conditions ahead, one-way street patterns, GPS equipment in cars and trucks, and radio broadcasts of current road conditions.
“These technologies exist now and can be effective on local streets and arteries and informative on expressways,” said Samy Vellu, who lead a delegation to the ITS World Congress in London recently.
“We are looking at using ITS on a larger scale. Now, it is more on an ad hoc basis, like the electronic toll collection system and the variable message signs (VMS),” he said.
While the GPS system is readily available in many high-powered vehicles in Malaysia, its usage has not been widely accepted due to lack of technological infrastructure.
Samy Vellu, who chairs the Malaysian ITS Council, said: “We will overcome this once we come out with the ITS master plan.”
He added that Malaysia was also in the process of formulating an ITS System Architecture.
“It will be a blueprint that sets out in advance, the elements of the system, defining how they will be integrated to achieve the targets of development,” he added. – Bernama
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