The CHART program is comprised of a number of sub-systems, including traffic monitoring, traveler information, incident management, and traffic management. To support the monitoring and control activities of the SOC and the TOCs, a large number of field components and devices are being deployed, including a communications infrastructure, closed-circuit television (CCTV) system for traffic monitoring and complex interfaces to existing and new detection systems. To support the motorist information needs, SHA is currently expanding its already extensive arsenal of Variable Message Signs (VMSs), Traveler Advisory Radio (TAR) transmitters, and Highway Advisory Telephone system. A media interface will also be added to the SOC system which will allow the media to access higher quality real-time traffic video to supplement this page's information. Our incident management capability will also be enhanced through the integration of all radio communications, local government communications, and our traffic signal systems activities.
SOC - Statewide Operations Center
The SOC, an information clearinghouse located in Hanover near the BWI airport, is the hub of the CHART system. It is supported by existing satellite TOCs located near College Park, Baltimore, Rockville, and Annapolis. This hub and satellite architecture provides statewide coverage, which allows information to be distributed based on geographical needs and/or expertise, and allows operations to be managed from several different locations. The 17,000 square foot, two story facility has six large screen rear projection systems on a two story high, 40 feet long projection wall. It contains five 6'x8' rear projection systems, one 9'x12' rear projection video wall and twelve 20-inch color NTSC monitors.
I-95 Corridor Coalition
Maryland is a member of the I-95 Corridor Coalition, which is comprised of 26 agencies/organizations responsible for transportation along the northeast section of the corridor from Virginia to Maine. The Coalition was established in 1993 and its mission is to "work cooperatively to improve mobility, safety, environmental quality and efficiency of inter-regional travel in the northeast through real-time communication and operational management of the transportation system. In doing so, the Coalition will seek to establish an economically beneficial multi-modal framework for early implementation of appropriate ITS technology." To carry out this mission, the Coalition has established the goal of implementing a set of integrated traffic management and traveler information systems along the I-95 corridor by the year 2000. Many projects have already been undertaken by the various Corridor agencies, which when coordinated, will help to achieve this goal. CHART is an example of such a project.
CHART will provide the key I-95 Coalition link in Maryland. In doing so, CHART will coordinate the statewide and regional needs of travelers and Coalition agencies. The coordination of incident management activities, dissemination of regional-oriented VMS and TAR messages, as well as the exchange of information with other Corridor agencies to address regional incidents along the corridor, is an integral part of CHART. An I-95 Corridor Coalition workstation is already installed at the SOC and additional connectivity to other regional traffic information providers such as SmartRoutes in Washington D.C. is underway.