Cubic Transportation Systems (CTS) has today announced a new traffic management system named NextTraffic, built on Microsoft’s Azure cloud. CTS will utilize the cloud platform to analyze huge volumes of traffic data and provide governments with data on peak times, congestion, and potential accidents before they happen.

CTS is most commonly known for its fare collection systems, which includes London’s Oyster card and New York’s MetroCard, among others. NextTraffic is separate from this collection service, instead using road sensors, roadside cameras, and connected cars as the bulk of its data collection.

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Microsoft’s Azure cloud will supposedly allow CTS to analyze much more data in a shorter time period, leading to powerful solutions to congestion. NextTraffic will be able to change traffic light changes, adjust speed limits, and potentially divert traffic to new routes.

“This collaboration allows us to utilize the full power of Microsoft technology to improve our solutions today and develop future-proof, scalable solutions for tomorrow,” said Boris Karsch, vice president of strategy at Cubic Transportation Systems. “This strategic relationship will be beneficial for both companies as we build on CTS’ expertise in payment and information systems for public transportation and traffic management and Microsoft’s world-leading enterprise solutions.”

Real-time data in transport a relatively new concept

CTS is a leader in transport systems, but the ability to change traffic systems in real-time is a relatively new idea. IBM, Siemens, and other enterprise tech companies are building their own systems, but CTS has a few decades of experience building traffic systems as leverage, which might sway some smart cities to opt for their solution.

“Smart city transportation solutions have the potential to improve traffic patterns, reduce congestion, contribute to economic growth and revolutionize city planning, all while improving the quality of transportation around the city,” said Toni Townes-Whitley, corporate vice president of worldwide public sector for Microsoft. “We’re excited to work with Cubic, a domain expert in its field, to develop new transportation solutions for our customers.”

David Curry

David Curry