Via Baltica to receive electronic road signs

Some traditional road signs will soon be a thing of the past (Postimees/Scanpix)
12/17/2015 4:44 PM
Category: Politics

Sections of the Via Baltica, also known in Estonia as the Tallinn-Pärnu-Ikla highway, will get smart new traffic signs in 2017, the Road Administration announced.

The aim of the pilot project is to make driving in the international highway, which connects Estonia to Latvia and rest of Europe, safer and smoother.

The electronic signs will be used to guide the traffic flow, monitor road conditions and inform drivers.

The new signs and information boards will be erected on town borders and near important road sections or junctions, project manager Kristjan Duubas said. He added that the Road Administration has so far simply lacked funds for the long-awaited system.

Whereas cooperation with Latvia has now made EU funds available for Via Baltica, state highways may still have to wait for another 5-10 years, even if the pilot proves successful.

The smart signs will allow for a variable speed limit in the outbound leg of the Laagri-Ääsmäe section just outside of Tallinn. According to the Road Administration, this does not just mean further restrictions on drivers, but also higher limits when road conditions permit.

“To a large extent, this sytem will function automatically, using the data from road monitoring stations and sensors inside the road surface. The changes in speed limits will be logged and archived, so the police know what limits where enforced and when,” Duubas explained.

The project costs 2.4 million euros.

M. Oll

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