Innovate UK has awarded a major contract for the development of a new Freight Traffic Control (FTC) platform to help manage construction freight movements and deliveries in congested urban areas.
The £485,000 contract was awarded to North East-based Grid Smarter Cities which will work with partners Croydon Council and EB Charging to develop and pilot an ‘alpha’ product in a live construction development in Croydon borough from March 2020.
The project will explore the potential of vehicle telematics, 3D mapping and Electric Vehicles on the future of construction logistic operations.
The end goal will be to develop a solution, building on Grid Smarter Cities’ award-winning ‘Kerb’ system, that will improve ease of movement for commercial operators when heading into and around the construction site, whilst reducing congestion and the environmental impact of HGVs.
Neil Herron, CEO and Founder of Grid Smarter Cities, said, “The Kerb FTC Project represents a great opportunity to showcase how practical innovation can deliver real impacts and we are excited to be working with the Croydon Council who are a trailblazing local authority intent on leading the way.
“Improving air quality is a key issue for society to address, and we are intent on being able to deliver technology that offers simple, easy to adopt process improvements to assist in construction freight logistics and the wider transport sectors.”
Councillor Stuart King, cabinet lead for environment and transport at Croydon Council, said, “This is an innovative project that will help us to monitor, manage and regulate HGV journeys across Croydon. This will help us try and make sure deliveries arrive not only in a timely manner but even more importantly that the journeys are as safe and green as possible.”
Karla Jakeman, Innovation Lead for Connected Transport & Communications at Innovate UK, added, “This project is a great example of how an SME can work with local authorities to solve real life issues around freight. This can provide a blueprint which can transferred to other local authorities around the UK. The potential spinoffs from this project are particularly exciting.”