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Melbourne set to host high-tech transport congress

Final round: Melbourne looks set to host the 2016 Intelligent Transport World Congress.

Up to 8000 delegates ready to descend on Australia for 2016 ITS World Congress

General News logo17 Apr 2012

MELBOURNE is in the box seat to host the world’s premier forum for advanced transport systems, the Intelligent Transport World Congress, in 2016.

The conference is expected to draw between 6000 and 8000 transport and technology experts to the winning city, which is expected to be rubber-stamped by the ITS World Congress board at a meeting in Tokyo on May 9.

The Melbourne bid made it through to the final round after beating Singapore to win the support of ITS Asia-Pacific at a meeting in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur this week, and the usual practice is for the regional winner to get the nod for the global conference.

The bid – organised by ITS Australia, which has held several national conferences on the subject – was made with the support of the federal and Victorian governments and Melbourne City Council.

ITS Australia president Brian Negus, whose day job is public policy general manager of the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria, was in Kuala Lumpur to hear that the Melbourne bid would be one of the finalists.

80 center imageLeft: ITS Australia president Brian Negus.

“The safety, mobility and environmental benefits of deploying ITS technologies in our transport systems will be the focus of the 2016 congress,” he said.

“As we have learned in recent years in our growing Australian cities, the application of ITS technology – ranging from in-car navigation to real-time traffic updates and incident alerts, variable speed control and freeway ramp controls – are adding value.

“These technologies make roads safer. They also reduce congestion, which saves fuel and cuts emissions.

“Equally, electronic stability control, lane detection, automatic tolling and sophisticated freight management systems are delivering safer and more sustainable road transport in urban and rural communities.”

Mr Negus said the ITS World Congress in 2016 would provide an opportunity to share the latest technical developments in Australia and to learn how ITS was being applied around the world to improve safety and mobility for people and freight.

Should the global conference be confirmed for Melbourne, the event will be held at the Melbourne Convention Centre on the banks of the Yarra River, with the theme “enhancing livable cities and communities”.

The next annual ITS World Congress will be held in Vienna in October.

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