THE COMMUNITY DEVELOPS ‘BRIDGE FORECAST’ TO PREDICT AND ALLEVIATE COMMUTER WOES
Launched in Partnership with Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables, AI Forecasting Technology Works to Solve for Miami Traffic
MIAMI – APRIL 25, 2019 – Innovative, cross-cultural global creative agency the community has launched Bridge Forecast, a first-of-its-kind system that monitors drawbridges in real time to inform commuters of potential traffic delays. Unveiled in partnership with Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables, this smart technology leverages computer vision and machine learning to predict and convey when Downtown Miami’s three major drawbridges, along the Miami River, will rise.
In researching the commuting patterns of Miami, the agency found that the tension between cars and boats had peaked, especially since the population in Downtown Miami had swelled 40 percent since 2010 and expected to grow close to another 20 percent by 2021. Businesses and commuters pushed to limit bridge closure times during peak rush hours to combat the many traffic delays. In turn, boaters and the U.S. Coast Guard, which regulates traffic on the Miami River, fought back, noting this would hurt their industry and cause navigational hazards in the water.
With traffic jams only increasing, and commuters and boaters at a draw, the community, under the leadership of Co-Founders & Chief Creative Officers José and Joaquin Mollá, launched Bridge Forecast as a solution. The system uses artificial intelligence and the placement of around-the-clock cameras overlooking the drawbridges on Miami Ave., Southwest 2nd Ave., and Brickell Ave.
By monitoring boat traffic and bridge openings using Computer Vision technology, the community created an understanding of bridge behavior. Then using machine learning, the agency took the behavioral data and began predicting openings in various time intervals. The system then conveys the information to commuters, allowing them to seek alternate routes and avoid traffic congestion.
“Knowing when a bridge is up is helpful but the gamechanger is predicting when it will go up,” said Raphael Franzini, Creative Director at the community. “The more people using it, the better we believe traffic will be. This is why we opened up our API for all to use.”
“Bridge Forecast started like an infant and, as its brain grew, it became a bridge expert,” said Chris Neff, Senior Director of Innovation at the community. “This brain fuels our forecast but we hope other navigation apps will adopt it as well.”
Recognizing the value Bridge Forecast would bring to commuters, Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables has partnered with the community to launch the system and promote it with its customers.
“Mercedes-Benz represents the best in safety and technology,” said Greg Barnes, President of Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables. “It’s beyond exciting to be part of something so forward- thinking that will enhance the driving experience and have an immediate positive impact on so many in our community.”