2.3.2 Problems with the Existing System
Mr. Zezeskiís December 16th letter, subsequent discussions with MDSHA personnel, and our own observations have led the CSC/PBFI Team to conclude that the existing system suffers from three major shortcomings:
- The system is not scalable and is difficult to maintain. It will not support the planned Statewide hardware build-out, and adding new devices or functionality is complex and costly. Its centralized nature also forces costly telecommunications solutions, which if continued, could consume more than the available funds for this purpose. The CHART II system must accommodate future system growth, must do so cost effectively, and must allow for the addition of new capabilities without the need for extensive new software development.
- The system is essentially a freeway management system and does not provide for a regional approach to traffic management. The CHART II system must provide for a common user interface that facilitates efficient sharing of information with a variety of legacy and external systems. These include Marylandís weather information, emergency operations, signal control, airport and electronic toll and traffic management systems. It also includes communications with transportation management and traveler information systems in Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Howard, Montgomery and Prince Georgeís Counties, the cities of Baltimore and Washington, DC, the States of Delaware and Virginia, and service providers such as Partners in Motion.
- The system does not provide its operators with the needed flexibility and ease of use. The CHART II system must include features that, for example, notify operators of the state of the system, clearly establish priorities for device control, automatically check newly created VMS messages, automatically select devices for monitoring incidents, etc.
Perhaps even more important, the process used to develop the existing system was unsuccessful from a customer satisfaction viewpoint; especially, the lack of ongoing communications between the system developers and MDSHA as system development proceeded.
The CSC/PBFI Team clearly understands the functional and performance problems of the existing CHART system, and the underlying breakdowns in the original development process that led to those functional inadequacies. We believe that, through our experience, our proven processes and methodologies, and strong existing relationship with MDSHA, we can work in true partnership to craft a positive and enjoyable development process. The result will be a useful CHART II system that will make MDSHA and the entire region proud and serve as an example for future systems nationwide.