According to a new study released by the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), cities and states with reduced budgets are turning to technology solutions to maximize the use of existing transport infrastructure and resources. The study reports that the intelligent transportation sector was valued at $48 billion in 2009, with a projected 41 percent end-use revenue increase by 2015.
The term “intelligent transport systems” refers to the use of electronics, communications, and information processing technology to improve safety, mobility and the environment of the surface transport system. Such applications of ITS can have a positive impact on transportation system efficiency and sustainability, safety, the environment, congestion, and traveler mobility and convenience.
The United States Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) commissioned the two-phase study in April 2009 in order to develop an accurate and comprehensive estimate of the ITS market in North America. The study is based on a survey of private sector companies and extensive econometric modeling, and it predicts the dollar value contribution of each company. The result is a detailed estimate of the size of the U.S. and North American ITS markets and their employment potential, but as is with any modeling exercise, the precision of predicted values is subject to model assumptions, accuracy of survey responses and the sample size.
The survey targeted 3,000 companies with expertise in traffic management, traveler information, public transportation, emergency management, maintenance and construction operations, archived data management, commercial vehicle operations, vehicle safety, and other crosscutting areas of ITS. “With almost 300 ITS companies responding to the survey and 3,000 ITS companies identified, we expect that the model will be valuable in forecasting future industry growth and impact on the economy,” the study says.
The report divides the ITS field into nine market sectors, one of which is public transport, and includes products like transit travel information systems, advanced fare collection/electronic payment systems and demand-responsive transit.
Prior to this study, the ITS industry, and particularly the private sector portion, had never been extensively characterized.
“I firmly believe that with this effort we have a solid foundation for a fact-based understanding of the economic impact of the diverse and expanding ITS industry and its potential to improve transportation safety and the livability and sustainability of our communities,” said Scott F. Belcher, president and CEO of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America.
Download the full study here.