Helsinki – a traffic lab

“I now declare Finland as the country for open traffic experiments – Finland is a Traffic Lab,” proclaimed Henna Virkkunen, Finland’s transport and local government minister, in June. Sounds great, doesn’t it? This great news I learned from the on the online IT magazine ZDNet (thanks John!):

Helsinki has an ambitious plan for its future. By 2025, the Finnish capital intends to revamp its public transport system to such an extent that private car ownership becomes pointless. The bold initiative is not just about providing more buses, trains, or taxis, but about creating a new transport infrastructure based on cutting-edge technology and a single, affordable payment system…

The aim is to install Traffic Lab-compatible devices in up to 60,000 vehicles, with the scheme running until the end of 2015. Then, the data will be made available to any interested company, Finnish or foreign, and used to plan, audit, and research the new transport services required for the 2025 plan….

The inspiration behind an initiative that would send many cityplanners running for the hills comes froma master’s thesis by transport engineer Sonja Heikkilä. Commissioned by the Helsinki City Planning Department, Heikkilä’s thesis argued young people’s changing attitudes towards cars, coupled with the growing functionality and takeup of mobile technology, could transform the way people get around the capital…

“The vision is that all kinds of [transport] services will be used together through a single portal,” Heikkilä says. “In addition to traditional public transport, it would include taxis, car-sharing, and services that don’t even exist yet. A proactive route planner will suggest journeys based on real-time traffic data and alert users to changes caused by accidents or changes in weather conditions.” (read more…)

Kutsuplus _ Ajelo

Kutsuplus _ Ajelo

More links:  Ajelo



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