Posted on Aug 23, 2021
Commuters enjoy a safer, more reliable trip when they know in advance what to expect. Delivering timely, relevant information to the motorists who need it, however, can be a challenge — especially when managing a large-scale highway construction project.
At any given time, a construction engineering and inspection (CEI) firm on a large project might be tracking dozens of road closures and detours but may not know how to disseminate that information effectively to emergency responders, traffic incident management personnel, and the general public. That is why Global-5 developed an advance construction alert system that notifies users of scheduled closures.
The first-of-its-kind system is fully customizable, so subscribers only get alerts that are relevant to them. When they sign up, they can select the specific interchanges or project segments that interest them. They can choose to receive weekly, daily, or hourly notifications by email, text message, or both. They can even select alerts by type — for example, major road work, overnight closures, or construction on local streets.
The heart of the system is an algorithm that fetches and analyzes data from a database of scheduled construction activities, then distributes the information in standardized formats according to users’ individual preferences. The data feed is ideal for delivering SMS text messages to customers. It also enables other innovative products and services, such as mobile app integration; instant social media updates; embedded alerts on partner agencies’ websites; and web-based construction maps.
CEIs find the system helpful for coordinating with contractors and managing their own construction schedules. A web-based map shows overlapping work zones and other potential conflicts at a glance. The data feed also supplies up-to-date information to Regional Transportation Management Centers (RTMCs) and private mapping companies. The alerts have even generated coverage from local news outlets, expanding the reach of vital construction information well beyond the subscriber list.