ITS America Announces Winners for 2011 Best of ITS Awards

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ITS America Announces Winners for 2011 Best of ITS Awards

 ORLANDO, FL. – The Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America) recognized the top innovators in the transportation technology community at the 2011 Best of ITS Awards. The Best of ITS Awards, which were held during the 18th World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems & Annual Meeting in Orlando, FL, recognizes the best and the brightest in the high-tech transportation industry.  

“This is the leading awards program in the country on transportation innovation and each of the winners is truly propelling transportation innovation forward,” said Scott Belcher, President and CEO of ITS America. “Each project that was recognized is a great example of how technology can be used to cost-effectively create a safer, more effective transportation network.” 

The category of Best New Innovative Products, Services, or Applications recognizes innovative projects that provide transportation solutions to users through ITS deployments, including the areas of public safety, security, surface transportation efficiency and the reduction of carbon emissions. First place went to Houston TranStar for “Cost Effective Arterial Network Travel Times”; Carnegie Mellon University’s “Tiramisu Transit” took second place; and the Florida Department of Transportation District 4 “Maintenance Inventory Management System” took third place.  

Four winners were announced in the category of Best New Innovative Practices which acknowledges projects in the areas of rural ITS, sustainability in transportation, marketing and outreach, partnership deployment (business-to-business, government-to-government, or public/private), and research and innovation. Chicago Department of Transportation’s took first place for “Chicago Traffic Tracker”; The Vermont Agency for Transportation’s “RWIS-VMS Automation and Florida DOT District 6’s “95 Express Marketing and Outreach Program” tied for second place; and Houston TranStar took third place for its “Real Time Travel Monitoring System for Hurricane Evacuation Routes” project."

“The Hall of Fame awards recognize the life-long champions of technology’s vital role in transportation, and recipients personify achievement in the ultimate standards for a leader in the ITS field,” said Belcher. Hall of Fame inductees included William Millar of the American Public Transportation Association, Thomas Deen with the Transportation Research Board, and William Harris of Texas A&M University.  

In addition to the Best of ITS Awards, ITS America also presented awards to three state chapters. ITS America has 25 state and regional chapters representing 40 states across the country and the Outstanding State Chapter Award recognizes chapter achievements in 2010. The award is divided into two categories based on size and ITS Florida was the Outstanding State Chapter in Division 1 with ITS Minnesota honored as a runner-up; ITS Connecticut took home the award in Division 2.     

A new award, the Membership Growth Award, was presented this year to reward state chapters that have excelled at attracting and retaining members. The runner-up, ITS Connecticut, experienced a 19 percent increase in membership in 2010. The winner, the Gulf Region ITS Chapter, or GRITS, tripled in size in the first part of 2010 from their 2009 establishment.    

Students from ITS America’s academic membership submitted essays documenting the value of ITS and its role in society for the Student Essay Awards. The third place winner was Mehrnaz Ghaman for the essay “Traveler Information on Environmental Costs of Alternative Mode, Green Travel Information” and second place was Curtis Walker for the essay “Intelligent Transportation Systems to Mitigate Impacts of Adverse Weather Conditions.” Aly Trawfik's essay “I Can Tell Where You Are Going and I Will Make Use of It” took first place. The student competition also featured a new aspect with the Student Smart Phone App and Hang Liu won for his  “PARTI for Joint Activity and Routing Guidance.”  

About World Congress

The World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems is an international meeting and exhibition that rotates among three major geographic regions (Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific) annually. Only held in the United States once every three years, the 18th World Congress on Intelligent Transportation Systems will come to Orlando, Florida on October 16-20, 2011, and the world’s leading transportation policy makers, technology, and business professionals will gather in Orlando with a goal of bringing greater levels of safety, reliability and accessibility to transportation systems worldwide.

Co-sponsored by ITS America, ITS Asia-Pacific, and ERTICO-ITS Europe, the 18th World Congress is expected to draw more than 10,000 delegates from more than 65 countries, including legislators, ministers of transportation, transportation officials, international standards experts, engineers, manufacturers, and other ITS stakeholders. 

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