Highways England centralises management of its tunnels through Crown Commercial Service’s (CCS) traffic management technology framework.

The requirement

Tunnel operations across England traditionally use Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) based systems which are managed on a localised, individual basis. To achieve significant efficiency gains, Highways England required the procurement of a scalable Tunnel Control and Management System (TCMS) which will enable the centralised control of an increasing portfolio of tunnels, starting with the Southwick and Roundhill tunnels in the South East. Highways England currently manages 13 tunnels across the UK’s Strategic Road Network.

The TCMS solution needed to be procured in a way that ensured the TCMS can grow to manage assets of this size. The estimated total number of tunnel devices across the Strategic Road Network is 5,200.

The procurement of the TCMS presented the opportunity to improve numerous aspects of a standardised tunnel control system. Therefore, the TCMS procurement required a solution to be delivered which addressed these opportunities. It needed to conforms to Open Standards, which are recognised within the UK . An open system shall deliver interfaces in a way that ensures that future development can be implemented by alternative contractors. The platform needed to be scalable in order to easily adopt additional infrastructure where required including adding or removing tunnels management and the capacity to expand beyond the South East.

Highways England also required the solution to seamlessly integrate with its traffic management systems, e.g. Common Highways Agency and Rijkswaterstaat Model (CHARM), to support the control and management of mainline and tunnel technology, and be easily accessible and user friendly for a multitude of users across different services.

The solution

Highways England ran a competition via Lot 14 (Intelligent Transport Systems) of the CCS Traffic Management Technology 2 (TMT2) framework in 2017.

Highways England conducted pre-market engagement with suppliers on the framework, particularly market leaders in the tunnel management domain, to gain feedback on the requirements. 7 tenders were received, which shows the breadth of capability available on the framework. The contract is configurable and pre-populated, therefore reducing the time taken to prepare for a competition. Consulting and technology firm Indra was commissioned by Highways England to implement their TCMS for 13 tunnels.

The results

The contract has a maximum contract term of 12 years and an initial contract value of circa €10m.

Indra will equip tunnels with its HORUS smart management platform which will be deployed in the cloud so that it can be controlled from anywhere. The solution integrates Intelligent Traffic Systems (ITS) and safety systems, allowing for automated incident management. It offers operators real-time information and sees everything that occurs in the tunnel, meaning that decisions of when to turn on variable message signs to relieve congestion can be made quickly.

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