Public Information

Kansas City Scout traffic management system earns national award

November 16, 2006                                                         06-310

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

News Contact:Stan Whitley, (785) 296-3585

Kansas City Scout traffic management system earns national award

The Kansas City Scout traffic management system has been recognized by the National Partnership for Highway Quality (NPHQ) as a winner in its 2006 national “Making a Difference” awards program.

KC Scout, which was nominated by the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT), won the bronze award in the NPHQ’s public communications category. The national contest is designed to recognize quality innovations promoting roads that are completed more quickly, ride better, last longer, reduce congestion and improve safety.

“Good communication contributes to the quality of the driving experience,” said NPHQ Executive Director Bob Templeton. “Communication empowers drivers with knowledge to make travel decisions appropriate for them, whether it’s avoiding highway construction or changing work hours to avert congestion during a morning commute.”

KDOT, the Missouri Department of Transportation, the Mid-America Regional Council and the Federal Highway Administration designed Scout. The traffic management system helps lessen traffic jams by improving rush-hour speeds, enhancing safety by decreasing the number of rush-hour accidents and improving emergency response to traffic situations.

Scout manages traffic on more than 90 miles of continuous freeways in the greater Kansas City metropolitan area. Scout uses cameras to monitor the highways from its operations center in Lee's Summit, relies on sensors to gage traffic flow, uses large electronic message boards to send urgent traffic notices to drivers along the freeways and activates a Highway Advisory Radio system that motorists in Missouri can tune to in the event of a freeway incident.

A unique aspect of Scout is its media partnership giving Kansas City television stations access to 75 cameras for traffic reporting. In exchange, the television stations provide both the Kansas and Missouri Departments of Transportation with a minimum of 72, 30-second public service commercial spots within a six month period during weekday air time.