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BlipTrack deployed in New Zealand

Blip Systems’ Bluetooth tracking equipment is being used by the New Zealand government to demonstrate the benefits of investment in the country’s transportation network. The Danish company’s BlipTrack technology has been deployed and operated by Beca, one of the largest infrastructure consultancies in the Australasia region. The BlipTrack (Bluetooth Local Infotainment Point Tracking) system collects anonymous Bluetooth signals from devices such as cell phones, headsets and in-car navigation systems, as they travel in New Zealand and uses the information to identify travel times and route preference. The on-going collaboration between Beca and Blip Systems has led to the system being deployed across three regions in the country, Auckland, Waikato and Wellington, with coverage expected to expand further in 2013.

The New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) has used information from the system to successfully demonstrate the travel savings provided by the newly completed US$160 million Te Rapa Bypass. NZTA’s, Waikato Expressway principal project manager, Richard Young, said, “We’re extremely pleased with the final result. The new road is delivering real time savings for all motorists, along with making the journey safer. In total it takes about seven minutes off commuters’ journey each day. That is a significant time saving and also a saving on fuel costs.” The Te Rapa Bypass project is the first of a planned US$2 billion investment in the Waikato region’s transportation network over the next eight years. The BlipTrack system has been established in advance of the projects and will continue to assess the benefits of each of them as they are completed. The Waikato network uses an initial nine BlipTrack roadside mounted sensors to monitor travel times and route choices across the Waikato Region, with more units being added as new sections of road are opened. The system has also been used to demonstrate the value of investment in other parts of the country, including following the completion of the US$250 million Victoria Park Tunnel in Auckland.

Beca has also deployed BlipTrack to monitor the behavior of pedestrians, notably at Auckland Airport, where the system has been online since 2010. Beca’s senior transportation analyst, Chris Vallyon, has been pleased with the performance of the BlipTrack product. “The Bluetooth tracking technology provided by Blip Systems provides a significant addition to the suite of technologies available to assist New Zealanders in understanding the performance of their assets and infrastructure,” Vallyon explained. “The hardware has proven to be robust enough to survive New Zealand’s volatile weather conditions, and the vendors have been proactive and efficient in creating a highly flexible matching system and then adapting it to suit our specific requirements. We’re very satisfied with the service we’ve received to date.”

January 23, 2013

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