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Gibraltar using SDR radar units

The Government of Gibraltar has announced that it is installing radar-based traffic monitoring systems, as part of the primary stages of its Sustainable Traffic, Transport & Parking Plan. A large amount of traffic information will be collected by means of new SDR Radar Traffic Classifiers, which have been purchased from UK-based Traffic Technology Ltd by the highways section of the government’s technical services department.

The SDR radar units are housed in black boxes, which are fixed at strategic locations to existing lampposts, signposts or other roadside infrastructure. As traffic passes along the radar’s detection path, it monitors various kinds of data, including: the number of vehicles circulating; the types of vehicles; and the direction and speed at which they are travelling.

The SDR classifier monitors and stores the data of up to 1.6 million vehicles in two directions, recording their arrival date and time, speed, length and direction. The setup and retrieval of data is easily carried out using either a PDA (Palm Pilot) or via wireless connection (GPRS or Bluetooth). Intelligent power management allows the battery-powered SDR to operate for up to 21 days. The data is then collated and processed digitally in the office to give actual information of all traffic movements, either by being uploaded to Traffic Technology’s ‘MyTraffic’ data website for further analysis or exported into optional Text or Excel formats.


The gathering of data in Gibraltar will continue on a rolling program over the coming months. The Minister with responsibility for traffic, Paul Balban, recently attended a site briefing by members of the highways section to see at first-hand how the equipment is installed and how it operates. “This is an essential step in the formulation of a Traffic Plan,” said Balban. “We are now collecting accurate data that can be used to determine the existing situation against which any future changes may be compared. I am very pleased with the way that the highways section management teams are carrying out this important work.”