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Traffic Count Estimation Made Easy

Company-X has enhanced the world’s first national transport quality assurance tool to help improve evidence-based decision making across the sector.

The Waikato software specialist has added a Traffic Count Estimation (TCE) module to Traffic Insights.

Company-X designed and developed the TCE module for use by Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency, city, and district councils on behalf of client Te Ringa Maimoa Transport Excellence Partnership.

“The Transport Insights TCE module provides a more consistent way for councils to estimate the traffic volumes on their roads,” said Company-X business analyst Bryan Miles.

“These estimates are extremely important for planning what roading work needs to be done where and when.”

The module is based on the Traffic Monitoring Estimation Best Practice Guidelines published by the Institute of Public Works Engineers Australia NZ (IPWEA NZ) Roading Infrastructure Management Support (RIMS) special interest group.

Miles shared details of the module with the sector at the Roading Infrastructure Management Support (RIMS) Forum in Christchurch in March.

Traffic estimation feeds into various aspects of roading network management and planning. Estimating the traffic count across a roading network was challenging. Road Controlling Authorities (RCAs) used various manual, and thus labour intensive, error prone processes to estimate traffic counts. Handling thousands of rows of data in one spreadsheet means there is a much higher chance of putting the wrong value in a cell or copying the wrong formula to a cell.

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The TCE module removes manual analysis, resulting in a more consistent result across the network.

“If I had to put an amount of time saved by using the tool, I would say it was in the two-to-three-month realm,” said Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency Road Asset Information Specialist Simon Chu.

“Taking the process away from a manual to a more automated process means there’s a much lower chance of errors.”

Te Ringa Maimoa, formerly the Road Efficiency Group, is a joint initiative between Local Government New Zealand and Waka Kotahi. It has partnered with Company-X since 2015.

"Transport Insights helps us make better asset management decisions," said Waipa District Council Asset Information Officer - Transport Kim Wright.

SIDEBAR: Company-X helps councils migrate to new data standard

Company-X is also working closely with Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency to help councils migrate to the new Asset Management Data Standard (AMDS).

Without a national data standard Waka Kotahi and 68 Road Controlling Authorities including the Department of Conservation, have an inconsistent approach to data capture and definition across the transport sector.

AMDS enforces a tighter level of control on data that is loosely defined. The tightening of constraints means those datasets need updating to comply with the standard, leading to more consistent use across the roading sector.

Company-X worked with the AMDS Programme at Waka Kotahi to help define the standard, providing critical advice ensuring the standard was implementable at Waka Kotahi and the 68 RCAs. Company-X was also intimately involved in prototype migrations and resolved many issues which fed back into changes to the standard.

Data standards are documented agreements on representation, format, definition, structuring, tagging, transmission, manipulation, use, and management of data.

Waka Kotahi consulted with Company-X’s transport sector subject matter experts Jeremy Hughes and Nigel Lynton as AMDS was defined. Between 1992 and 2014 Company-X co-founder and director Hughes worked with Lynton on the business analysis, data design and modelling of Thinkproject’s Road Assessment and Maintenance Management (RAMM) database. Their combined quarter century of experience not only gave them an unparalleled knowledge of RAMM’s data design but an essential grasp of the purpose and goal of that design.

Te Ringa Maimoa Transport Excellence Partnership also consulted with Company-X on how to include minor structures in the standard.

Company-X also assisted with the AMDS prototype migration. The project tested migration of real-world data to the standard. It also validated the ability to implement the standard across the NZ roading sector including RCAs, maintenance contractors and professional engineering services.

Hughes’ team at Company-X developed toolsets to enable automated rapid migration to AMDS and testing.

Company-X’s automated toolsets interrogate the data in RAMM and, in the migration process, ensures it has the right structure and is migrated to the right location.

“AMDS is starting to have real impact on how we are thinking and working,” said Wellington City Council's Pamela Brown.

“We are preparing for the implementation into our database and already planning how it will enable us into digital engineering.

“AMDS is just in time for us as we support the data and information needs of the large, complex, and ambitious Let’s Get Wellington Moving projects. The interest and support from across the sector is fantastic as we make the changes we need for a new way of working.”

About Company-X

Company-X offers world-leading software savvy delivered with a can-do attitude.

Founded in 2012 by software specialists David Hallett and Jeremy Hughes, Company-X immediately won contracts with New Zealand government departments and a US multinational.

The team has grown to more than 50 New Zealand-based software specialists, with only the best and brightest passing the Company-X interview and assessment process.

The Company-X team prides itself on experience in a wide range of technologies and languages and loves challenging problems.

Company-X ranked on the Deloitte Technology Fast 500™ Asia Pacific, a list of the fastest-growing technology companies in the Asia Pacific region, in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Company-X has won many awards:

  • Company-X won an ExportNZ Top Tech Companies of 2022 award.
  • Company-X won the Best Professional Service Innovation Award in the Hamilton Central Business Association Central Business District Awards 2021
  • Company-X software quality assurance tester Jes Elliott won the Reseller News Women in ICT (Information and Communication Technology) 2021 Rising Star Award.
  • The Independent Software Vendor Award at the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 for state-of-the-art software that turns text into human-like audio files at a fraction of the cost of booking a voice artist, recording studio and sound engineer.
  • The Independent Software Vendor Award at the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2019 for a hands-free auditing application developed for AsureQuality.
  • The Service Excellence and Global Operator awards at the Westpac Waikato Business Awards in 2018.
  • The Services Exporter of the Year category at the Air New Zealand Cargo ExportNZ Awards 2017.
  • The Homegrown Innovators Independent Software Vendors Award at the Reseller News ICT Industry Awards 2017.
  • The Roading Asset Management Innovation Award at the Road Infrastructure Management Forum in 2017 for the One Network Road Classification Performance Measures Reporting Tool built for the New Zealand transport sector.

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