BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo's Transportation
Systems Laboratory is only a year old, but already its researchers
are helping enhance the mobility of travelers in Western New York
and southern Ontario.
Shan Huang, a doctoral student in the UB Department of Civil,
Structural and Environmental Engineering and a researcher in the UB
laboratory, helped develop the software behind the subscription
traveler information system announced this week by the Niagara
International Transportation Technology Coalition (NITTEC), an
organization of 14 transportation agencies in Western New York and
Southern Ontario whose mission is to improve transportation systems
on both sides of the border.
The free system, called MY NITTEC, uses data from NITTEC's
advanced traffic management system to alert drivers in Western New
York and southern Ontario via email or text messages to traffic
incidents or congestion that will affect their daily commute.
"Like similar systems that have been launched in other parts of
the state and the nation, MY NITTEC was designed as a travel
planning tool so that drivers can adjust their daily commutes to
any incidents that have occurred before they head out from home or
work," said Adel Sadek, PhD, associate professor and director of
the UB Transportation Systems Laboratory. "The idea is that drivers
receive the information before starting their trip."
Subscribers register for MY NITTEC at http://mynittec.org/ and input
information on what roads they take each day and at what time. The
system then continually searches its database for information on
"If it locates an incident, such as a road closing or an
accident, it will then send an alert to the user in an e-mail or
text message, allowing the user to choose an alternate route," said
MY NITTEC is believed to be the first traveler alert service
that is available for cross-border travel between the U.S. and
According to A. Scott Weber, PhD, professor and chair of the
Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering at
UB, the collaboration is an early indicator of how the public will
benefit from the establishment of UB's Transportation Systems
"UB's transportation program is addressing a variety of research
issues, such as developing intelligent transportation systems,
creating integrated methods to guide land-use and infrastructure
management and, as we have seen with MY NITTEC, using information
technologies to improve transportation systems," he said. "We are
pleased that such a productive collaboration has developed so
quickly between the department and NITTEC in ways that are
benefitting the upstate New York region."
NITTEC executive director Tom George noted, "MY NITTEC is going
to help drivers on both sides of the border, especially in the
coming winter months. We look forward to continuing to work with
UB's researchers on more projects in the future."
The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public
university, a flagship institution in the State University of New
York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB's
more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through
more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree
programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of
the Association of American Universities.