LONDON A road pricing trial conducted in the Netherlands by NXP and IBM working on behalf of the Dutch government has been proclaimed a success in that it reduced traffic congestion and decreased kilometers driven and carbon dioxide emissions.
The six-month road pricing trial, conducted in the city of Eindhoven, was designed to provide the Dutch government with insights into how to address traffic congestion and green targets in the Netherlands. The test was declared a success with 70 percent of drivers changing their behavior to avoid highly priced rush-hour driving.
The trial involved GPS and the installation of onboard electronics that provided instant feedback on the price of the road and the total charges for the trip at the given time. As a result drivers involved in the trial on average drove less, were stuck in fewer traffic jams and saw their cost per kilometer when they did drive improve by 16 percent, NXP said.
The Netherlands will be introducing a compulsory road-use charge starting for trucks in 2012 and for passenger cars in 2013. It is expected to cover all roads nationwide by 2016. Once fully implemented the price-per-kilometer system is expected to achieve the following benefits: a 58 percent reduction in delays caused by traffic jams; a 15 percent reduction in the total number of kilometers driven; 10 percent reduction in CO2 emissions and a 6 percent increase in total passenger kilometers via public transport.
"The test has vastly exceeded our expectations," said Maurice Geraets, senior director at NXP, in a statement. "Together, NXP and IBM have logged more than 200,000 test kilometers as part of the trial, and the complete system has proven to be highly reliable. The technology is ready to charge car owners fairly for the use of the car based on road type, time of day and the environmental characteristics of the car, and to give effective feedback to drivers to influence their behavior helping them save money and make more efficient, greener driving choices on a daily basis. Further, the Eindhoven trial has demonstrated that our technology is ready for implementation in any large-scale traffic management program."
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