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The 24th JCT Traffic Signal Symposium & Exhibition

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For 2023 and onwards, information and bookings for the JCT Symposium and MOVA User Group will be at our new dedicated JCT Symposium website. This section of the JCT Consultancy website will remain as an archive of past symposia but will not be updated with new content for future events or be used to receive bookings.

Tuesday 17th and Wednesday 18th September 2019 at The Nottingham Conference Centre.

This page provides archive information on the 2019 Symposium.

For this year's Symposium, please click here

Special Events Sponsored by:

Media Partner:

SMART Highways magazine offered a free print subscription to all attendees this year, saving delegates £95.

The 2019 Symposium was held at The Nottingham Conference Centre on Tuesday 17th September and Wednesday 18th September 2019.

The format of the event was the same as in previous years and included a Symposium programme filled with topical presentations, a specialist Exhibition, and plenty of opportunities to catch up with old friends and colleagues and network with new contacts.

The MOVA User Group was also held at the Conference Centre on Monday 16th September.


The JCT Symposium & Exhibition started in 1996 as a way to bring traffic signal practitioners together with manufacturers and to maintain a sense of community amongst signals engineers. It is intended to run as an affordable conference that is accessible to as many people as possible, regardless of experience and that encourages the exchange of knowledge, experience and good practice. Over the past few years, the symposium has consolidated its position as the UK's best conference event for traffic signals.

The Symposium & Exhibition runs over two days, and is usually preceded by the MOVA user group. It mixes conference style papers, the principal manufacturers, networking opportunities and organised social events in the evening. As far as content goes, the emphasis is on the signals community itself and JCT seeks submission of papers and presentations from working signal engineers, manufacturers and suppliers. The broad appeal of the programme means that papers are also welcome from policy makers, interest groups, and academics. If you would like to share your experience with the signals community then please let us know and we will do everything we can to help you including subsidising attendance at this event.

Prizes 2019

As regular Symposium attendees will know prizes are awarded each year for the papers presented. The prizes are awarded by a panel of eminent traffic signal professionals, which this year consisted of:

  • Stuart Beniston (Retired)
  • Louise Hewlett (Kirklees Council)
  • Peter Randles (Liverpool City Council)

Our sincere thanks to the judges.

This year's prizes were awarded as follows:

Overall Best Paper

New initiatives for an aging UTC system – Some of the innovative techniques TfL is using to improve traffic signal performance for buses, cyclists and pedestrians.
Chris Blucke - Transport for London

Best Presentation

The Evolution of the Magnetometer from Traffic Signals to MIDAS and beyond
Peter Cattell – Clearview Intelligence

Most Thought Provoking Presentation / Paper

Securing the expeditious movement of traffic – a discussion on the requirements of the Highways Act, and the issues that Local Authorities face in managing their highways network
Nick Warwick – Cumbria County Council (Retired)

Most Innovative Paper

Artificial Intelligence for Signal Control: Working towards rollout in Manchester
Mark Nicholson – Vivacity Labs
David Watts – Transport for Greater Manchester

Paper Most Likely to promote Best Value

Temporary detection for UTC – keeping sites coordinated
Jackie Davies – Bristol City Council

JCT Consultancy Exhibition Treasure Hunt

The treasure hunt prize this year was a dash camera with a collection of accessories.

2019 Symposium Papers

The 2019 Symposium Programme consisted of 27 papers from a range of speakers. The Symposium's papers are written and presented by the signals community itself and JCT actively seeks submission of papers and presentations from working signal engineers, manufacturers and suppliers as well as policy makers, interest groups, and academics.

The programme of papers for 2019 is shown below:
Copies of selected papers to download will be available here shortly.

Symposium Papers

Keynote: Back to the future - From early experiments with Floating Vehicle Data Collection to significant opportunities to monitor and manage networks
Andy Graham – White Willow Consulting

Andy made his last appearance at the 2002 JCT Traffic Signals Symposium where along with Gary Gates he discussed pioneering data collection work in their paper “Floating Vehicle Data Collection”. Formally at Faber Maunsell Andy is now the Managing Director of White Willow Consulting, he Chairs the ITS-UK Connected Vehicles Forum and is a winner of the ITS-UK award for outstanding personal achievement. Looking back on his 2002 paper Andy will share with the Symposium the significant possibilities which have arisen in the last few years to integrate large data sets into better decision making and control.

Traffic Signal Optimisation and Validation in Area 4
Shane Collins – 4way Consulting

A look at the lessons learnt, tweaks, tricks and improvements made at 10 sites across the Highways England Area 4 network, as part of a signal optimisation and improvement programme.
The paper and presentation will focus on how the team assessed and improved the signal performance quickly, and how this initial work is leading to further medium and longer term improvements.
The techniques used in both MOVA and SCOOT, along with several ‘quick win’ innovations with the design and implementation of new, low cost technology will demonstrate how operation can be improved and demonstrate the value of spending time and effort on paper and on street getting existing signals running well.

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The importance of feedback to product providers
Richard Childs – NAL

Eight years ago, following feedback from multiple Traffic Signal Engineers, Designers and Installers of their concerns about using carcinogenic base seal in traditional cabinet bases, which not only posed a potential risk to their health, but also required additional BT visits, NAL decided to investigate options to resolve this problem.
As part of the product development process NAL went back to the drawing board to look at additional issues with traditional cabinets, such as difficulty in re-cabling, risk of flooding, risk of vermin/slug infestation and risk of gas build up to come up with an innovative solution that resolved multiple problems.
The result was the patented NAL Controller Cabinet Base which has been widely used by the Traffic Signals industry for several years and is now being specified by other sectors such as Smart Motorways.
This paper uses the example of the development of the NAL Controller Cabinet Base to discuss the importance NAL puts on their strong working relationships with engineers and designers, to ensure feedback on real issues and problems are used to update existing or develop new products.

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Artificial Intelligence for Signal Control: Working towards rollout in Manchester
Mark Nicholson – Vivacity Labs and David Watts – Transport for Greater Manchester

Promoting multi-modal travel and reducing congestion are near the top of most transport authorities’ wish-lists. Through using AI to gather highly accurate data on distinct classes of road user, including cyclists, combined with AI to optimise the transport network, Vivacity Labs are unlocking the potential for a step-change in signal control. This talk will describe an ongoing £3.5m project led by Vivacity Labs to deliver AI-powered traffic signal control, including the data types being collected to inform the AI, the simulations being used to train the AI, and the work done so far working towards on-street delivery, which will culminate in a large-scale deployment in Manchester with TfGM.

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Optimizing for Everyone using Cooperative Adaptive Control
Greg Barlow - Rapid Flow Technologies

In the UK and around the world, different forms of adaptive control have emerged and become widespread. Most of these can be characterized as either 'local', or 'central' systems, each with their own merits and limitations. With computing power at the intersection now sufficient to achieve both flexible, adaptive local control and efficient network coordination, powerful real-time, decentralized adaptive control now allows ‘local’ traffic signals to cooperate and coordinate traffic across complex road networks, scaling to entire cities. First deployed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 2012, the Surtrac adaptive system has spread to 10 cities in the US and Canada, with interest and planned projects around the world, including the UK.

Surtrac is now being used to optimize traffic signals in real-time for many modes of travel, such as pedestrians, cyclists, and transit vehicles, all within the context of overall car traffic. We look at how Surtrac has been implemented already, how it is being used to optimize journeys for all road users, and how this approach can translate to the UK.

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Evolving & Enhancing Traffic Management - Second Generation Ramp Metering
Dalia Sueiro - Atkins

Traffic usage and technology change over time; traffic management systems need to adapt to suit this changing environment.

National and local authorities have a duty to manage traffic effectively. Ramp Metering is a traffic management system that authorities can use to help slip road traffic merge with the mainline flow in a more controlled manner. Since 2006 Highways England have benefited from deploying Ramp Metering at suitable junctions across their national network. The current (1st Generation) ramp metering systems haven’t changed in the intervening period, they do not use up to date technology, they are dependent on specific roadside infrastructure, and are getting very hard to maintain. Highways England commissioned Atkins and Dynniq to specify, develop and trial a new generation of Ramp Metering that is better adapted for the current and future traffic environment and facilitates more collaboration between different traffic systems and traffic authorities. An overview of the project plus experience from its development and first year of operation will be shared.

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Chapter 6 - Crossing the Stopline
Sally Gibbons - DfT

Chapter 6 “Traffic Control” of the Traffic Signs Manual is about to cross the stopline and after years of development will bring together key advice on Traffic Control in a single document. Sally will be presenting information on the final release of this much anticipated document.

Local bus priority, centrally
Pep Corso – Leeds City Council

Motus has developed its Morph unit to include a feature that provides the facility to receive an RTIG bus priority trigger feed directly and convert the RTIG messages into outputs to MOVA. This development has been undertaken for Leeds City Council and significantly reduces the latency associated with transmitting bus priority triggers through UTC.
The reduced latency is now comparable with local bus priority but without the hardware requirements. It improves the flexibility and efficiency of bus priority and contributes to the objectives of the ~£174m Leeds Public Transport Improvement Programme.

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Cooperative ITS trials in Bristol (Flourish) and Belgium (Intercor)
Alex Verploegh – Dynniq

Dynniq has performed its end-to-end C-ITS deployment trial for in-vehicle services in Belgium, demonstrating its advanced “Day 1 Services”. This was successfully achieved by providing both mobile and G5 communications to and from infrastructure and included both security and signage messaging from central traffic management centres.
The deployment proved interoperability between C-ITS hardware components, vehicles from different countries and through the two prominent communications methods.

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‘It's adaptive control, but not as we know it’
Klaas Rozema – Dynniq

This paper will look at how a modern adaptive control algorithm such as ImFlow can provide benefits over traditional MOVA and SCOOT adaptive options by not only working with more forms of data input, but also provide more usable forms of data output for today’s new vehicles (and drivers via Apps) many of which are already set up for driving in the future.

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A629 Corridor Improvements
Emma Robshaw – WSP

Emma will look at a variety of measures being considered to improve the A629 Corridor including:

  • A629 schemes, including reasons for improvement requirements (ie cycle route, improvements for buses)
  • Free School Lane junction – design ideas (keeping traffic moving alongside ped crossings), configuration, operation results, lessons learnt
  • Corridor – design ideas, configuration, operation results, lessons learnt (including potential config change at Dudwell Lane, and seeing driver behaviour and demand before construction begins, scheme was fixed before MOVA design work)
  • A629 plans for the future, including up and coming Salterhebble scheme

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Protecting the cycle: A scenario-based approach for improving traffic flow and reducing driver frustration at portable signals
Darren Hudson – Traffic Group Technology

In this paper we present results of a collaboration between the Kent Lane Rental Scheme Innovation Fund, UK Power Networks and Traffic Group Signals to investigate and improve the efficiency of vehicle movements at roadworks controlled by portable traffic signals. Extensive road trials have been undertaken in order to understand the factors which limit the efficiency of traditional Vehicle Actuation (VA) operation at these sites and to identify specific causes of driver frustration.

Use of a scenario based operating mode, called AutoGreen, is presented as a means of addressing current limitations, improving efficiency and reducing the likelihood of specific situations which we believe result in driver frustration.

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Securing the expeditious movement of traffic – a discussion on the requirements of the Highways Act, and the issues that Local Authorities face in managing their highways network
Nick Warwick – Cumbria County Council (Retired)

Nick will present his thoughts on outdated strategies, failure to validate adaptive systems, the lack of high level guidance and basic ground rules and the absence of a standard model. He will discuss the challenges facing local authorities due to lack of resources and make suggestions on how we improve our performance with limited budgets.

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Tbilisi – Georgia on my mind (Bus priority Schemes)
Dave Parkin – Mott MacDonald

A team of five staff from Mott MacDonald spent time working in Tbilisi with the Municipal Council to help them develop and implement bus priority measures in the city.
Dave spent the total of about four months in Tbilisi over four trips to the country, helping to design bus lane schemes with traffic signals improvements to improve the reliability of journey times. This included the design of bus gates (a totally new concept to them) and bus priority at traffic signal controlled junctions.
The traffic signals in the city are connected to one of two UTC systems – an older Ukrainian system or newer Siemens system – and the buses are all equipped with AVL system for operational control and bus passenger information system.
The team looked at using output from the bus AVL system to provide an input to the UTC system(s) and provide bus priority.

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M1 Junction 24 Abnormal Load Bay
Simon Hilditch – BWB

A holding bay for abnormal load bays has been constructed as part of the reconfiguration of M1 Junction 24. Safety concerns were raised about how abnormal vehicles can safely exit the bay as they would potentially take a long time to do so, in conflict with the heavy traffic flows at the junction.
Several options were looked at and the key was to find a solution that does not affect traffic flows unless there is an abnormal vehicle which is an occasional event, i.e. we did not want to install standard signals at the exit.
An innovative solution was developed to set specific stages within the traffic signals to hold main traffic at key points and create a sufficient gap, but without signalling the bay itself.
The final solution was subject to a detailed safety risk assessment that was agreed with Highways England. The signals are also linked to VMS signs that are activated by the signal controller when the special stage is set. One of the most challenging aspects was how to detect the presence of an abnormal load vehicle in the bay which was overcome by careful loop positioning, input sequencing and real world testing.

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Strategy as a Service
Simion Notley – Dynniq

This paper will build on the work that Dynniq have done on the Eboracum Project allowing clients to define the outputs that they want, and then a strategy being provided as a service based on Common Database derived rules and controls delivering the desired controls and outcomes on the road network.

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Green Man Authority – An Innovative Solution to contribute to Healthy Streets in London
Jennifer Treen & Andrew Rogers – TfL

The Walking Action Plan is one of a series of steps to make the Mayor’s Transport Strategy commitment of 80% of all trips in London to be made on foot, by cycle or using public transport by 2041 a reality.
The plan outlines Green Man Authority as an innovative traffic signal control technique that will improve pedestrian walking experience.
This technique developed by TfL fundamentally changes the way standalone crossings operate to deliver priority for pedestrians over vehicular traffic. Jennifer and Andrew will set out the concept of Green Man Authority, the operational requirements, the engineering challenges to prioritising walking and the observed behavioural changes

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Building Information Modelling - a business process to reduce whole life costs of infrastructure assets
Will Baron – Keysoft

Building Information Modelling (BIM) originated within the building construction industry. Here, it has already been proven to reduce whole-life costs.
Whilst one key aim of BIM is the creation of a ‘digital twin’, it is not in itself software. Although, of course, software facilitates this. It is a process and, through careful management, the information detailed during the design and build phases of any scheme can be harnessed to ensure the efficient use of resources at all stages, from design, construction and maintenance.
The advantages are clear when this is applied to building maintenance, but less obvious for road infrastructure. The paper will shed light on exactly what BIM is, and how it can be used to help you minimise your whole life costs.

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Smart Traffic - A Discussion of the Results From the Netherlands
Coen Bresser and James Drinkall – SWECO

Traffic congestion in urban areas is a growing and global problem, impacting the majority of people traveling and goods moving in these urban areas. Cities are challenged to keep traffic flowing, reduce pollution and decrease the economic damage caused by congestion.
Predictive technology will play a significant role in the cities of the future. Next-generation technology for Traffic Light Controllers is based on real-time data fusion through a predictive real-time traffic model. Rather than emptying queues like traditional controllers, each vehicle approaching the intersection is detected and its arrival time forecasted.
Based on these forecasts the most efficient schedule is calculated, increasing the throughput significantly. Along with the optimisation it is possible to prioritise bicycles or trucks, as part of road authority policies and objectives to reduce pollution or encourage the use of certain modes of transportation. First on-street results and experiences with use-cases will be discussed in this presentation.

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UTC Controllable Temporary Signals: Highbury Corner STIP Case Study
Daniel Hornshaw – TfL

In order to facilitate a complete closure of the A1 Holloway Road in London for bridge replacement works, an innovative approach using the latest traffic signalling technology was deployed to maintain road network connectivity to a major urban transport hub.
The approach taken was aligned with Mayors Transport Strategy and application of Healthy Streets focused policies to ensure continued provision of sustainable transport modes on London’s road network. The TfL Network Management team worked in partnership with Hochtief/WSP to develop a proposed solution.
The paper will provide a comprehensive overview of the project, the key outcomes and conclusions.

Safety in procurement and the role of ARTSM
Mark Pleydell & Kealie Franklin – ARTSM

Building on last year's presentation this year will focus on how ARTSM is a part of the traffic control community. How the Association works closely with TOPAS in the creation upkeep and where needed the implementation of new specifications and beyond these, how it listens to and engages with the wider community and pools the combined knowledge and experience of the member companies in guidance notes for design procurement and implementation of traffic control equipment, VMS, signs and related hardware.

Temporary MOVA using SRL Urban64 Signals
Tom Siddall – 4way Consulting

A look at the first installation of MOVA on the ‘temporary permanent’ SRL Urban64 signals.
The paper and presentation will look at how the Urban64 signals and MOVA operation have been designed and implemented at a roundabout being upgraded from conventional signalisation to a hamburger. It will explore the benefits realised, the challenges faced and solutions used during this first implementation of MOVA in this situation.

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New initiatives for an aging UTC system – Some of the innovative techniques TfL is using to improve traffic signal performance for buses, cyclists and pedestrians.
Chris Blucke – TfL

A new era of Healthy Streets policy in London means that TfL has needed to adapt how it uses it’s UTC system, applying techniques originally designed to reduce delay for vehicles to now help people travelling on foot, by bike or by bus.
The paper will give an overview of STUDI, an tool developed internally to extract and analyse settings in our UTC system.
It will also go over some of the methods used over the last year that has resulted in over 20% more bus priority actions across the capital compared to the previous year.

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The realities of distributed traffic control
Keith Manston - Siemens Mobility

Siemens Plus+ uses distributed intelligence with simple power and data cabling to deliver on-street resilience and reliability, as well as fast and cost-effective signal installation. Following on-street trials, Keith Manston reviews the real life experiences of designing and installing this latest development in traffic management and control.

Adaptive Strategic Linked MOVA using Blockly
Craig Cameron - Siemens Mobility

An overview of how adaptive MOVA linking can be realised using the new Blockly visual editor functionality provided by the Siemens Stratos Outstations. The linking strategies achieved are adjusted based on queues detected on loops, oversaturation data from MOVA and end of saturation reached. The benefits and pitfalls of the use of Blockly code for conditioning will also be discussed.

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Temporary detection for UTC – keeping sites coordinated
Jackie Davies – Bristol City Council

The loss of coordination of one junction within a UTC region can have wide-reaching disruptive effects on the efficiency of coordinated traffic control, whether SCOOT or other. Loss of coordination can occur when a site is being refurbished, or due to the failure of one or more detectors at a site.
This paper builds on previous presentations from Bristol City Council explores the trials of a temporary solution the can be deployed to keep a site operating in a coordinated manner until either the refurbishment is complete or loop failures are remediated.

The temporary solution uses above ground detection devices and a dedicated wireless/mobile data link, to a dedicated OTU. As with any permanent UTC arrangement this OTU is configured to route the detection data to support the optimisation of the junction/region/network. This arrangement is seen as a temporary measure to keep UTC coordinated across disruptions to detection data.

During the development of the concept concerns were expressed about latency and delay, however bench testing suggested this would not be an issue and roadside trials have shown that this offers an economic solution that can be deployed quickly. Once the site has been repaired or the refurbishment is complete then the equipment can be held by the authority in readiness for the next site or detection failure.

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The Evolution of the Magnetometer from Traffic Signals to MIDAS and beyond
Peter Cattell – Clearview Intelligence

A comprehensive overview into the performance, uses and reliability of wireless vehicle detection. Taking into consideration the results of the Jacobs’ report into the use of magnetometers for MIDAS on the M62 and how wireless vehicle detection can be used in other formats for route safety and queue protection. Also reviewing how data is utilised from sensors and the latest improvements for traffic.

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The Symposium has had a parallel exhibition for many years and features the main companies working in traffic control. Entry to the exhibition is free for Symposium delegates.

  • AGD Systems
  • Aldridge Traffic Systems
  • Association of Road Traffic Safety and Management (ARTSM)
  • C&T Technology
  • Clearview Intelligence
  • Coeval
  • Dynniq
  • EJ
  • FLIR Intelligent Transportation Systems
  • Institute of Highway Engineers
  • JCT Consultancy
  • Motus Traffic
  • MVIS
  • NAL
  • Now Wireless
  • Siemens Mobility
  • Smart Highways
  • SRL
  • Swarco Traffic
  • SVS Ltd
  • Telent
  • Traffic Group Signals
  • TRP

Event Sponsors for 2019

As in previous years the Symposium was sponsored by several major companies from the traffic control industry. Siemens Mobility generously sponsored the main Gala Dinner on the Tuesday evening.

The following are kindly supported by our sponsors:

  • Gala Dinner (Tuesday Evening) - Siemens Mobility
  • Barbecue Night (Mon Evening) - Aldridge Traffic
  • Drinks Reception (Tuesday Evening) - Swarco
  • Evening Social/Networking on Monday and Tuesday - Dynniq, NAL, Swarco, Coeval, TRP, ARTSM, Motus Traffic, JCT Consultancy
  • Delegate Goody Bags - Dynniq
  • Badge Lanyards - Institute of Highway Engineers
  • Exhibition Treasure Hunt - JCT Consultancy

Further Information

If you would like any further information regarding the Symposium or Exhibition please don't hesitate to contact us at


Upcoming courses

21 Oct 2024: Introduction to Traffic Signals ...more

23 Oct 2024: LinSig3 : Junction Modelling Computer Workshop ...more

14 Nov 2024: Online Advanced Traffic Signal Design ...more

21 Jan 2025: Online Introduction To Traffic Signals ...more

04 Feb 2025: LinSig3 : Online Junction Modelling Computer Workshop ...more

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