For informational/historical purposes only.

NEWS RELEASE

Ohio Department of Transportation Internet News Release
March 20, 2001

NEW WEB CAMS TO GUIDE I-70 COMMUTE  

DELAWARE It may not have the makings of the hit reality-based TV show "Survivor," but the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is hoping that 16 traffic cameras now accessible via the World Wide Web will have many central Ohio commuters glued to their monitors.

ODOTs new "Web Cam" system, posted at www.I-70.org, allows motorists to access real-time traffic images along the Interstate 70/71 corridor from their home or office computer.

"Its yet another tool for motorists to beat the barrels on I-70 this year," said Jack Marchbanks, ODOT District 6 deputy director. "These web cams allow us to provide commuters with up-to-the minute, accurate traffic information so they can make educated decisions regarding their commute." 

The system is the first of its kind in central Ohio. If it proves successful, ODOT plans to expand the use of web cams to other construction work zones around the state next year.

The cameras are provided through a joint partnership between ODOT and the City of Columbus. The system consists of 16 traffic cameras located in and around the I-70 work zone; nine are existing cameras owned and operated by the city and seven are new cameras posted by ODOT. 

Camera images are transmitted by various means to an ODOT web server, then linked to the I-70 website. Instead of streaming video, which can be costly and difficult to access, visitors are provided snapshot images of the highway. Depending on the speed of the modem, users are given updated snapshots every few seconds.

Using these snapshots, motorists can make decisions regarding when to leave their home or office or the best route or method of travel to take.

"We know the reconstruction will cause delays this year, but armed with this information, motorists can play an important role in helping us reduce those delays and keep traffic moving," said Marchbanks.

Its all part of ODOTs " Know Before You Go" campaign. 

"Web cams are one of several methods were using this year to empower motorists with information that will help take the surprise out of their commute," he said.

Motorists can also obtain information through several nontraditional means such as Highway Advisory Radio (1200 A.M.) and a new email subscription service accessible through the I-70 website. A construction hotline number is also available to Franklin County residents by dialing (614) 995-7906. For outside Franklin County, motorists can dial (800) 372-7714.