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Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) is a broad range of diverse technologies applied to the transportation infrastructure to make systems safer, more efficient, more reliable and more environmentally friendly, without necessarily having to physically alter the existing roadway. The range of technologies involved includes sensor and control technologies, communications, and computer informatics and cuts across disciplines such as transportation planning, engineering, telecommunications, computer science, finance, electronic commerce and automobile manufacturing. ITS is an emerging global phenomenon benefiting public and private sectors alike.

The Region of Durham Works Department is at the forefront of ITS in a number of areas:

  • Traffic Signal Responsive Control – over 400 traffic signals are controlled through a central traffic control computer to maximize efficiency.
  • Monitoring – the Regional road network is monitored through the use of CCTV and vehicle detectors.
  • Database Management and Warehousing – the Works Department maintains an extensive database of traffic data, from signal timings to collision statistics to traffic volumes.
  • Emergency Vehicle Pre-Emption – The local fire departments have the ability to activate signals in their favour when responding to emergency calls. As the fire truck approaches a traffic signal, the driver can signal the traffic light to change to a green indication and thus decrease the response time to the emergency call.

The Region of Durham recently completed its ITS Strategic Plan.

For more information on ITS, please visit