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23 May 2006

Mott MacDonald brings leading-edge transport conference to Birmingham

One of Britain’s most respected transport experts is helping to bring the first Transport Modelling Conference to Birmingham. Tom van Vuren, who works at Mott MacDonald’s Midlands office, and who is on the Government transport advisory group, has written the programme for the event, which is being held at the Think Tank in Birmingham on June 27th.

‘Transport modelling’ is a technique used to process information about traffic and the general environment to make a computer simulation, which transport planners can then use to forecast what might happen if changes are introduced. For example, if the local council wants to look at the impacts of building a new road, through transport modelling they can see the possible changes this would make to people’s travel patterns and the traffic conditions they experience.

Dr van Vuren said, “This conference is the first of its kind in the country and is designed to help share knowledge among transport planning professionals. It will demonstrate how progress has been made over recent decades, in the event of new technologies such as on-board computers, mobile phones and CCTV. We hope that this in turn will help councils and governments in planning their transport systems and land use into the future.

“The event will feature the most current developments in transport modelling and is due to attract experts from across the transport sector. It’s a great accolade for the City and it’s highly fitting that it will be held at the Think Tank.”

Mott MacDonald has an excellent track record in transport planning in the West Midlands, having provided the mathematics and know-how for the modelling support on the recently approved Selly Oak Bypass. The firm is also developing simulation systems for West Bromwich and Sutton Coldfield.

Dr van Vuren commented, “Transport has a significant effect on land use, mobility, the environment, the economy, Government finance and quality of life for us all. Good planning is essential to help create high quality systems, at a reasonable cost, with minimal environmental impact. Transport models give decision makers numerical support for what are inevitably complex choices that affect many parts of our society.”


Notes to editors

About Mott MacDonald:
  • Mott MacDonald’s Birmingham office has some 300 staff, providing leading-edge services in buildings, water and environmental services, cost consultancy, PFI and transportation including highways, integrated transport and railways. Its 70-strong transportation team delivers transport, planning and data services to the seven West Midland metropolitan authorities.
  • Tom van Vuren is Divisional Director at Mott MacDonald and visiting professor at Leeds University.
About the Transport Modelling Forum:
The event is being presented by Local Transport Today magazine and produced by Landor Conferences - Landor was established in 1990 and is a well respected conference and event organiser based in South London. Full details about the conference programme, confirmed exhibitors and the free trade exhibition are available at www.transportmodelling.co.uk or contact Clare Leonard on 0845 270 7865.
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