The Oxfordshire Mobility Model Transport is a rapidly evolving sector as the way we use energy and the technology available to us change.
Transport is a rapidly evolving sector as the way we use energy and the technology available to us change. Accurate, flexible modelling has never been so important. The Oxfordshire Strategic Model (OSM) was developed in 2013. The OSM was one of the first to use Mobile Network Data (MND)to its full potential. Unfortunately, the data within the model is now reaching the end of its usable life. As the technology has evolved, seven years on, Oxfordshire County Council wanted a new ambitious and innovative approach designed around local authority needs and rapid changes in mobility, and with the technology to model future changes.
This led to the Oxfordshire Mobility Model (OMM) project with a consortium of organisations: Oxford Computer Consultants (OCC), Alchera Technologies, GeoSpock, Immense Simulations, Zipabout and of course, Oxfordshire County Council.
The consortium will build a cloud-hosted model for transport simulation, which will allow Oxfordshire County Council to calculate the demand for different types of transport under different scenarios. The models will use a new technique called “agent-based” modelling in which individual journeys are simulated. The interface will be built on games-based interactions to make it more intuitive and easier to use. This will allow for wider use of scenario-based simulation of future conditions and better incorporation of new modes of transport. This will be a new way for the council to determine the strategy and funding required to make transport provision in the region more efficient.
The solution combines an innovative agent-based approach to transport modelling with real-time analysis of data from a variety of sources, principally mobile networks. At the heart of the OMM is a highly scalable data store allowing fast querying and integration of GIS data from many sources, including air quality and socioeconomic data. The OMM exposes a plugin API supporting apps and services that can add value to the results – something unique to transport models. OMM is promoting a move towards a pay-as-you-go paradigm with which cloud-based solutions are better aligned.
OCC’s role is to lead and manage the consortium, provide user experience (UX) design, including user-centred design, provide integration of the components the consortium partners bring and create data visualization. What-if scenarios will give insight into the transport network under proposed changes such as new property developments and changes to the network infrastructure.
The OMM project includes commercial objectives too. OCC will set up a company to hold the OMM model itself and engage in business planning, market assessment and commercialisation activities with Oxfordshire County Council and the other partners. Reynold Greenlaw, the Director of Innovation Delivery at Oxford Computer Consultants, says of the OMM project, “This is very different to the usual way of working with local government, and the consortium, including Oxfordshire County Council, are innovating not only on technology but in how to share the benefits of the results.”