Amidst spate of accidents on Samruddhi Mahamarg, the 701 km long, access controlled greenfield expressway will soon be equipped with an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS).
The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC), which is executing the project, has issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for this purpose.
As per the RFP, the scope of the work includes design, supply, installation, commissioning, and maintenance of the ITS system which includes Advanced Traffic Management System (ATMS) and Toll Collection System (TCS).
The AI-enabled system will ensure proper monitoring and enforcement of traffic rules to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities on the expressway, ensuring quick incident and accident management, smooth flow of traffic and reduced transit time.
Officially named ‘Hindu Hrudaysamrat Balasaheb Thackeray Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg’, the six-lane expressway connects Mumbai and Nagpur.
The first phase of the Samruddhi Mahamarg, connecting Nagpur to the temple town of Shirdi in Ahmednagar district covering a distance of 520 km, has been in operation since December 2022, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated it.
In the second phase, a 80-km stretch between Shirdi and Bharvir village in Igatpuri taluka in Nashik district, was inaugurated on 27 May 2023 by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
With this, a total of 600 km out of the 701 km of the Samruddhi Expressway is now open to the public. The remaining 100-km stretch under Phase-III, between Igatpuri and Vadpe in Thane, will be opened to the public during the year 2024.
A total of 1,282 accidents have taken place on the expressway since December 2022, resulting in 135 casualties over the eleven-month period.
The introduction of ITMS is expected to improve road safety and significantly reduce violations on these highways.
“Presently, monitoring at Samruddhi Mahamarg relies on quick response vehicles, patrols by regional transport personnel, and highway police. Traffic assessment is manual, but with the introduction of ITS, control through artificial intelligence becomes possible,” writes Indian Express, quoting an MSRDC official.