Smart Roads: An Integrated Technology for Future Innovative India

    The transit conduits are the propagating elements for the settlements to evolve, develop the circumventing, expand as the urban agglomeration, and enhance the image of the city reflecting it’s furtherance to the first visit commuters. At this moment in time, Road convey is a pivotal pier of the conveying system in cities. Congestion makes road infrastructure inept and causes pollution pecuniary loss macro cosmically. To alleviate this, either truncate road traffic or enhance road capacity. In the midst of, the finer alternative is to abbreviate road traffic through technology and policy arbitration. In this contemporary age, Technology is the supplementary driving factor of the development embedding the policies as the concrete application channel.

     According to precedent replications to city development challenges, in India, a few State regimes have been able to take adequate steps towards the development of their cities. The national regime's replication to challenges witnessed in towns and cities was optically discerned from 1979 onwards with the exordium of the centrally sponsored scheme of Integrated Development of Small and Medium Towns (IDSMT). In 1993, the Mega-City Scheme was introduced in five cities. Generally, quandaries were experienced about concerning State and local regime capacities to actively drive the Mission, deficiencies in preparation of city development plans and detailed project reports, delays in timely relinquishment of funds from the Centre to States, difficulties in land acquisition for housing and infrastructure development, and fictitious timeframe given to State and local regimes for implementation of governance reforms. The decennium-long program receded in 2014-15 with an involution in the country's leadership. Since then, accentuation is being laid on the utilization of ‘Smart’ principles for ameliorating conditions in subsisting towns and cities across the country.

     The smart city concept integrates information and communication technology (ICT), and sundry physical contrivances connected to the Internet of Things (IoT) network to optimize the efficiency of city operations and connect to civilians. It primarily featured some of the assets like promoting the utilization of technology to enhance and amend its infrastructure. Formation of E-groups will sanction people to voice their opinions and receive feedback, monitor programs and activities with the avail of cyber tour worksites. An incrementation in access to public conveyance and ingenious solutions such as keenly intellective parking, smart management, and integrated modal convey. It will be more pedestrian and cyclist convivial with key administrative accommodations at shorter, walkable distances. Smart cities will redevelop or develop extemporaneous and poorly orchestrated areas such as slums, with a vision to make cities safer and less disaster-prone. One of the concerning developments related to the highly specialized roadway projects ranges from Smart roads to the bullet train. Roads must transform themselves to play a pertinent role in this “revolution”. There cannot be a keenly intellective city without a smart road and together a smart city with smart roads can provide nationals with smart mobility. The road sector faces a major challenge for this century: the definition of an incipient paradigm that makes Smart Roads.

     The approach proposed is predicated on the definition of a broader, all-inclusive concept incorporating all parameters contributing to the amelioration of road infrastructures: mobility efficiency, environmental performance, advanced traffic control technology, life-cycle analysis of construction and maintenance costs and energy inputs, utilizer-oriented designs, safety, and security performance, and long-term financing solutions. Furthermore, this concept must not only encompass the design, construction, and operation of incipient infrastructures but additionally contribute to the amelioration and adequate maintenance of subsisting road networks, to ascertain that all highway upgrades and modernization efforts take into account the attributes of the Smart Roads concept. This advancement ascends from structural to emotional attributes and Sci-Fi to Reality jotted as;

 1. Solar-powered roadways

Photovoltaic cells with hexagonal panels comprise of tempered glass, LEDs, microprocessors, snow-melting heating contrivances, and inductive charging capability for electric conveyances when driving. It has gained widespread support, magnetizing over $2 million in crowdfunding, scalability is a challenge as it remains sumptuous.

 2. Smart pavement

Specially engineered roadways fitted with keenly intellective features, including sensors that monitor and report transmuting road conditions, and Wi-Fi transmitters that provide broadband accommodations to conveyances, homes, and businesses. The astute pavement can withal charge electric cars as they drive.

 3. Glow in the dark roads

Glowing markers painted onto subsisting roadway surfaces utilize a photo-luminescent powder that absorbs and stores daylight. The 500m long divests glow for 8 hours after dark. This technology is still in the testing phase, and the glow is not yet consistent, but it could be more cost-efficacious than traditional road lighting.

 4. Interactive lights

Road lights activated by kineticism sensors to illuminate a particular section of the road as a car approaches. The lights dim once the car passes. Suited for roads with less traffic, interactive lights provide night overtness as needed and truncate energy wastage when there are no cars.


5. Electric priority lane for charging electric conveyances

Embedded cables engender magnetic fields that charge electric conveyances while driving. A receiver coil in the conveyance picks up electromagnetic oscillations from a transmitter coil embedded in the road and converts them to AC, which can then power the car. Inductive charging technology already subsists for static cars, but future wireless technology could charge batteries while in kineticism.

 6. Weather detection

Networks of AI-integrated sensors detect whether that impact road safety. A more astronomically immense future network could utilize automated weather stations to accumulate atmospheric and weather data and instantly upload it to the cloud. Dynamic temperature-sensitive paint could be acclimated to highlight invisible roadway conditions like ebony frozen dehydrogenase monoxide.

 7. Traffic detection

Data that avails peregrinators plan their routes. Sensors lining highways monitor traffic flow and weight load, admonish drivers of traffic jams and automatically alert the ascendant entities about accidents. Fiber-optic cables embedded in the road detect wear and tear, and communication between conveyances and roads can amend traffic management.

     The advancement is not just ceased here, but withal virtually built on the ground. Up-gradation in the more incipient hi-tech has in turn availed the town planners to come up with technology-driven alternatives implemented by policy predicated options. The Smart City Mission, 2015 has genuinely gifted India its first ‘Smart Road’. In May 2018, India’s first green and smart expressway, the Eastern Peripheral Expressway (EPE) was inaugurated. The 135-km-long has been built in a record time of 17 months. Its substructure stone was laid by PM Modi in November 2015. Minimizing pollution as well as ease the traffic movement while connecting Palwal, Gautama Budh Nagar, Faridabad, and Ghaziabad with the Delhi-NCR region was the main aim of this project.

     It is built in a record time of proximately 500 days. EPE has eight solar power plants having a capacity of 4000-kilo watt. Goods conveyances from Gurugram, Faridabad, Noida, and Ghaziabad will be diverted onto the EPE afore it enters Delhi. Not only this, but the EPE will also avail divert at least 2 lakh conveyances that pass through the national capital. As per the regime, the commercial traffic entering Delhi would be minimized by 30%. The EPE has astute mechanisms and as such will have auto challans for over-speeding. Cameras mounted alongside the expressway will capture haste of conveyances. It will withal have provisions of tolling only for the distance travelled. Video incident detection system, pavement management systems, admonishing contrivances, fibre optic network are some of the other facilities which would be available. The EPE will be functional from today onwards. There will be police personnel deployed at all border ingression points connecting Delhi with the neighbouring districts. 406 structures, four major bridges, 46 minor bridges, three flyovers, seven inter-changes, 221 underpasses, and eight roads over bridges are lined up along the entire access-controlled six-lane expressway. Retail fuel outlets, restrooms, motels, restaurants, and shops are dotted alongside the Expressway. The Eastern Peripheral Expressway withal has a rainwater harvesting system and has 28 fountains along with 2.5 lakh trees. The 36 famous monuments’ miniatures depicting India’s affluent culture and heritage like India Gate, Gate Way of India, Ashoka’s Pillar have been set up on both sides of this expressway. The Digital Art Gallery has been constructed by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) to acquaint the coming generation and the visitors about the technique utilized in the construction of India’s first access control highway, obstacles faced in the process, and other works. Eighteen exhibits have been prepared in the gallery in which all information concerning the construction of the Highway has been incorporated.

     Supplementally, Western Peripheral Expressway (WPE), which is expected to minimize traffic congestion and pollution, is another example of this kind. India’s first 14 lane Delhi Meerut expressway, is under construction. It will provide major mitigation to commuters, while withal decongesting the national capital. Once completed, the peregrinate time from Delhi to Meerut is expected to minimize to just 45 minutes from the current 4-5 hours. This is how India has already commenced getting acquainted with technology-driven country planning. Integrating to one of the characteristics of India, having World’s second-largest road network, soon India will be at the top with a technology-oriented efficient, sustainable transportation system.

By Harshali PatilHarshali Patil is a UG student pursuing in Urban and Regional planning from College of Engineering Pune. She is an avid to explore incipient conceptions and work for research predicted studies dedicated to multiple domains and integrated aspects in Planning.


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