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National Highways will trial three ideas aiming to “ease the pain of roadworks” next year, each being a winner of a competition the company held earlier this year.

The competition resulted in 10 finalists receiving up to £15,000 to help investigate their proposals. The three winners will each receive up to £60,000 in order for their innovative ideas to be officially trialled on the road network.

The first winner is Alchera Technologies, working with Costain, which plans to understand the impact of roadworks and road closures through AI.

Robok, supported by Balfour Beatty, will use AI to analyse CCTV footage, helping them understand driver and road worker behaviour.

The third winner is WordNerds, supported by Kier and Costain, who will use AI-powered text analytics to provide an understanding into people’s perceptions of roadworks. It’s hoped this would provide National Highways with more evidence and information when making improvements to its roadworks.

One of the objectives set by National Highways was to allow smaller businesses the opportunity to work with the company and share their concepts to improve UK roads.

The three winning ideas will begin being put in place in January. In addition to funding, the enterprises will receive support from Connected Places Catapult and National Highways to help develop their schemes.

Nicola Bell, Executive Director for major projects, said: “Our goal in launching the competition was to find new ideas to help reduce the impact of roadworks on people and we are confident these exciting projects will be able to do just that.

“We are putting them to the test on our network, which will be the real challenge, but we are excited to see how well they perform and the difference they can make not only to road users but people living near ongoing works.”

To keep up with more road safety news, head to the Anglo Liners blog, or get in touch for a free no-obligation road marking quote.