The National Works Agency (NWA) is working on the establishment of a traffic management centre for Montego Bay, as part of a comprehensive traffic management programme for the tourist capital.
The programme will also involve putting in closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras and an incident management system.
NWA Manager of Communications and Customer Services, Mr. Stephen Shaw, informed that the traffic management centre “will be the site at which the communication between the traffic signals and the strategically placed cameras will take place”.
“The police station located along Church Street is the proposed location for the traffic management centre,” he told a meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Providence, held on Wednesday (March 3), at the Wexford Hotel.
President of the Kiwanis Club of Providence, Tessa Reid Morris (right), presents a certificate to Manager of Communications and Customer Services at the National Works Agency (NWA), Stephen Shaw, after he addressed a meeting of the club on Wednesday (March 3) at the Wexford Hotel in Montego Bay.
He explained that the incident management system is geared towards improving traffic enforcement activities, while the strategically placed CCTV cameras will facilitate the quick identification of interruptions to flow of traffic and the formulation of appropriate responses.
“Our vision of the system is to have the entire greater Montego Bay area covered through the use of the technology, stretching from Reading in the West to Lilliput in the East. We are well underway to achieving this . we also intend to work with the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) to put in the infrastructure from Ironshore to Lilliput, as part of the lighting programme for the median along the Elegant Corridor,” Mr. Shaw stated.
The traffic management programme got underway in November last year with the installation of co-ordinated traffic signals at a number of key intersections, the re-routing of traffic, and converting two-way streets into one way.
Mr. Shaw informed that the system is already working with marked improvement in traffic flow throughout the tourist capital.
“Based on our own assessment and the feedback from road users in Montego Bay, it is evident that the plan has begun to achieve its objective. It is now much easier for motorists to make their way through the town. The new traffic system has resulted in a much smoother flow of traffic along several corridors,” he said.
He noted, however, that the full potential of the project could only be realised when all users of the roads – pedestrians and motorists – exercise greater levels of discipline on the roadways.
“We urge all road users to be more disciplined as their indiscipline will only add to the congestion in the city. We encourage all pedestrians to use the available sidewalks and to cross in the designated areas. Observe the walk signals and always walk briskly across the roadways when it is safe to do so,” he advised.
Mr. Shaw also cautioned motorists to yield to pedestrians at the various crossings and adhere to the speed limits, noting that with the improvement in traffic flow, drivers are now travelling at excessive speeds along the roadways.
“This is quite dangerous for both pedestrians and the motorists themselves. Be on the lookout for small children and other pedestrians and never assume that the pedestrian has seen you,” Mr. Shaw urged.