University of Minnesota Driven to Discover
U of MNUniversity of Minnesota
Center for Transportation Studies

ITS Institute News Archives: 2009

Second-generation geospatial database to enable ITS applications

The University of Minnesota’s Intelligent Vehicles (IV) Laboratory, part of the Intelligent Transportation Systems Institute, has developed a new version of its geospatial database software. The newly optimized database brings the benefits of real-time access to extremely accurate and dense geospatial data to a wider variety of ITS applications. The new system was developed by IV Lab researchers Bryan Newstrom and Curtis Olson, who documented the process in a recently published report; lab director Craig Shankwitz served as principal investigator on the project.

Continue reading


Webinar: Non-Intrusive Detection of Driver Drowsiness

Advanced Transportation Technologies Seminar, November 19, 2009
Xun Yu
, Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Minnesota Duluth

Watch Non-Intrusive Detection of Driver Drowsiness


Researchers demonstrate next-generation bus; fleet planned for USDOT congestion relief program

Craig Shankwitz

Craig Shankwitz

The next generation of Twin Cities transit took center stage at the 2009 ITS Minnesota Fall Forum, as Intelligent Vehicles Laboratory (IV Lab) director Craig Shankwitz presented a driver-assistive system for buses operating on bus-only shoulders and bus lanes.

The annual event, sponsored by the Minnesota chapter of ITS America, brings together companies, transportation professionals, and researchers to exchange information on ITS projects around the state.

Continue reading


Annual report now available

The ITS Institute’s 2008–2009 annual report is now available online. The report highlights the Institute’s research, education, and outreach activities from July 2008 through June 2009.

Read the 2008-2009 ITS Institute Annual Report


Safety and Signing for Uncontrolled Pedestrian Crosswalks

Presentation by Thomas J. Smith, Department of Kinesiology, University of Minnesota
Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs—Regional Planning and Policy Seminar
November 12, 2009

The increase in the number of walkers and bikers in urban areas offers a challenge for planners trying to prevent accidents. Many cities have installed roadway stripes, yellow warning signs, and even flashing lights (active warnings) at uncontrolled pedestrian crosswalks (crosswalks located mid-block or at unsignalized intersections) to signal drivers that pedestrians might be present.

How well do those measures work? A recent study led by Thomas J. Smith of the University’s Department of Kinesiology found that in many cases, drivers do not slow down for marked crosswalks—even those with active warnings.

Continue reading


Middle schoolers prepare for transportation-themed robotics competition on campus

high tech kids

More than 250 young science enthusiasts from across Minnesota converged on the University of Minnesota campus October 13 for a morning of educational workshops and tours of research facilities. The event, hosted by the Institute of Technology, CTS, and educational nonprofit organization High Tech Kids, was planned to help the students prepare for “Smart Move,” the 2009 FIRST LEGO League robotics competition.

Continue reading