Local councils drive forward with national road network data
highway information using Ordnance Survey’s most detailed dataset of Great Britain’s road network.
The take-up of the OS MasterMap Integrated Transport Network (ITN) Layer is supported by a series of improvements to currency, accuracy and content based on efficiency gains in data collection.
Councils such as Worcester, Oxfordshire, Isle of Wight and East Sussex are using the ITN Layer to create and share information from their local street gazetteers.
This is helping with the coordination and technological requirements of the Traffic Management Act, freight plans, and ensuring the gazetteers comply under the BS 7666 standard.
“The ITN Layer is the ideal nationally consistent base to support all these efforts,” says James Brayshaw, Ordnance Survey’s Director with responsibility for local government. “The vision of a national street gazetteer with publicly available, royalty-free identifiers requires countrywide and detailed information. More and more authorities are successfully using OS MasterMap layers as the prime source for their street data"
As the structure of OS MasterMap allows for data association, street gazetteer records can be linked directly to the unique identifier of the ITN link TOID – creating a common key across highway systems. The TOID is royalty free, so cross references can be built and shared with other users across different database systems without attracting royalties or IPR concerns.
East Sussex County Council and others have been working with South East Water on a project to enable the implementation of a solution to meet the wider requirements of the Traffic Management Act. Combining the Council’s local road attributes with Ordnance Survey’s most up-to-date road network geometry offers an improved environment for the planning and practical coordination of local street works. The benefits of this approach are reduced disruption and congestion on the road network for all citizens.
Roger Williams, Traffic Manager for East Sussex County Council, says: “Both we and South East Water were committed to ending the confusion that can sometimes exist when it comes to street works. This, coupled with our need to deliver our network management duty, meant that it was important that South East Water had access to the most accurate gazetteer available. The fact that South East Water holds an OS MasterMap ITN Layer licence made data sharing very easy.”
Martin Giel, Applications Manager for South East Water, comments: "I’m delighted that our partnership with local highway authorities, particularly East Sussex County Council, will allow us to be far more accurate in the way that we work.
"We have used our experience and expertise in the mobile working environment to place our GIS at the centre of a new process using a mapping interface for the creation of any job that requires an incursion onto a highway.
"This and the implementation of Exor‘s ’Atlas Highways’ application using the council’s gazetteer, both based on OS MasterMap, have delivered a spatially referenced system that has allowed us to make a real difference.
“We can now be far more accurate in the way that we place notices for upcoming street works, which is not only better for us, the County Council and the general public but it also allows us to fulfil our duties as part of the Traffic Management Act.”
A nationally consistent framework using topologically structured open information, such as the ITN Layer, also supports the utilities sector through the work of the National Underground Assets Group (NUAG), which champions better coordination in recording and storing information on pipes, cables and other buried infrastructure.
NUAG recognises the need for accurate road geometry for utilities, highways agencies, civil engineers, surveyors and others with an interest in precise positioning on the road network. The group is working to develop standard processes to help coordinate activities that underpin the Traffic Management Act.
As well as local authorities and utilities, the ITN Layer is used by central government departments and agencies such as Defra, the Highways Agency and the Department for Transport (DfT). The data underpins vehicular routing information provided on the DfT’s award-winning multimodal journey planning service, Transport Direct. This is the first web portal to provide free access to comprehensive journey information for both public and private transport across Great Britain.
Ordnance Survey’s data improvements mean there are now more than 740,000 named roads in the ITN Layer with 99.21% of road links present (up 0.39% from last year). There are correct classifications of 99.70% of A roads, 99.94% of B roads and 99.93% of minor roads.
The improvements follow sustained efficiency gains in an integrated data capture policy involving Ordnance Survey field staff, enhanced technologies and a range of external sources. Around 300 surveyors equipped with GPS kits and other precision measuring devices each travel an average of 8,000 miles a year capturing changes to the road network – more than two million miles in all.
Ordnance Survey’s data capture resources include a national infrastructure of GPS base stations, which improve the real-time accuracy of raw satellite-based positioning from around 10 metres down to centimetre level anywhere in the country. As part of its ongoing investment in the infrastructure, Ordnance Survey recently announced new stations in the Thames Gateway region to support the massive redevelopment expected in the area in the next five to ten years.
In October 2006 Ordnance Survey announced that customers of the ITN Layer would have access to the weight, width and height restrictions applying to road bridges in Great Britain, making it the only digital map dataset to contain such nationwide information.
The Integrated Transport Network (ITN) Layer is an accurate, detailed and up-to-date geographic reference base for Great Britain’s road infrastructure. Part of OS MasterMap, it complements the Topography, Address and Imagery Layers to support decision making and deliver services benefiting from precision detail about all aspects of the transport route network.
The ITN Layer consists of two themes: the Roads Network and Road Routing Information (RRI). The Roads Network represents all navigable roads across Great Britain for those who require increasingly sophisticated geographic data to support their services and applications.
The comprehensive RRI theme extends the product’s data functionality with features that may affect a driver’s choice of route, including height, weight and width restrictions, traffic calming, turn restrictions and one-way roads as well as vehicular access and time restrictions.
Ordnance Survey works with a number of Licensed Partners, including systems developers and application providers, who use ITN data to create solutions to meet specific customer requirements. A list of these is available on our website www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/partnerships.
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