Indra leading European Harmony multimodal transport information project


Spanish transport technology and systems integrator Indra is leading the European Harmony R&D&i project that is developing technologies for integrating real-time data from different transport operators, and providing the means to improve multimodal information services.

Indra – in collaboration with the G@TV and TranSYT research groups from the Polytechnic University of Madrid, Spain, and with the support of transport operator Grupo Interbús and Spain’s Traffic Department (DGT) – is starting the Harmony project with a pilot study in Madrid for developing new technologies that facilitate the exchange of information between different transportation stakeholders.

The project will contribute toward improving multimodal information services on mobility in a city and ‘intermodality’, a definition for the combined use of mixed modes of transport. With a budget of €1.3m (US$1.5m), the three-year Harmony project is part of the European Commission’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) program, which aims to complete the Trans-European transportation network.

The Harmony project’s pilot program is currently underway in the north of Madrid, where some of the services that have been developed are undergoing testing. The initial phase has involved the participation of Grupo Interbús, which manages a major part of Madrid’s metropolitan transportation network.

Interbús has access to statistical data in real time, such as incidents and journey times for its bus network, in standard formats, such as the SIRI protocol for the real-time information exchange on vehicles and public transportation services, and the DATEX model for the information exchange between traffic management centers.

By integrating the information from Interbús into Indra’s traffic management platform, the buses can be located graphically in real time on a map of Madrid’s different roads and transit routes. Directors from Spain’s Ministry of Public Works have been able to verify that these initial services are proving to improve management tasks for public transportation operators, during a recent visit at the Interbús control center.

In the pilot project’s second phase, the DGT will be involved in validating the real-time, standardized information exchange between its data on some of Madrid’s main roads, and transit data from Interbús. In addition to testing services for improving the city’s overall mobility management, and contributing toward a coordinated and speedy response when faced with incidents, the pilot project also contemplates offering citizens new services, such as alerts and multimodal route planning, that will be developed in a third phase. Upon completion of the project, and based on the results obtained, the applications and services could be rolled out elsewhere.

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).