Bandar Seri Begawan - The invaluable data collected from motorists through the ongoing, first-of-its-kind National Roadside Survey will be used to develop a computer model that simulates the movement of traffic and will also lead to the recommendation of solutions to various scenarios for the study of the Brunei Land Transport Master Plan (LTMP).
The survey is the most critical phase of the study of the Master Plan which is currently being carried out by the Centre for Strategic and Policy Studies (CSPS) with appointed consultant SQW China Limited, and in association with Atkins.
This is by far the most comprehensive set of transport surveys ever to be conducted in Brunei.
The surveys commenced yesterday without much of a hitch, thanks to the assistance of the Royal Brunei Police Force, whose personnel lent a hand in roping-in motorists for interviews.
Also present were officials from the main stakeholders of the study, namely, the Ministry of Communications and the Ministry of Development.
Overseeing the survey was the Director of SQW China Limited, Jim Jessamine, who noted that similar surveys have been carried out in China, the Middle East as well as Europe.
Dr Diana Cheong, Chief Researcher at CSPS, was also present, along with Dato Paduka Dr Hj Ismail bin Hj Duraman, the Executive Director of CSPS.
Andrew Hodgson from Atkins in an interview said, "We want to use the data to understand the people in the country and to build a general picture of the Brunei transportation. With the data, we will develop a computer model to simulate movement of vehicles and look at solutions to various scenarios."
The computer model, he said, "will be ready by early next year, while the recommendations will be out by the spring of 2013".
Besides the roadside survey, two individuals are also counting the numbers of cars in traffic. In the survey itself, road users are only asked where they came from, where they are headed to and why.
Seventy individuals have been recruited from ITB, UNISSA and UBD to help with the survey. The survey was conducted at four locations yesterday, areas identified as major traffic corridors, namely Jalan Berakas, Jln Muara, Jln Residency and JIn Kebangsaan.
"We are hoping to conduct surveys at four sites per day in the Brunei-Muara District, Belait District and Tutong District," said Hodgson. "We are hoping to collect five to ten thousand surveys from road users."
He later conveyed his gratitude to road users for participating in the survey. Their input, he says, will help the future of the country.
Dato Dr Hj Ismail, meanwhile, said that "the national survey will be done in Brunei-Muara over two days, then move on to the other districts of Belait and Tutong".
"The data will be analysed and used for policies for the land transportation," said the executive director.
Dato Dr Hj Ismail also apologised to road users for any inconveniences caused, and hopes to seek public cooperation in the survey to help the country achieve Brunei Vision 2035.
Meanwhile, Dr Hj Supry bin Hj Awg Ladi, Acting Director of Transport Policy at the Ministry of Communications, noted, "This is the first of its kind - a roadside interview carried out by CSPS.
"There will also be interviews done in the Kampong Ayer area, especially at the jetties, to obtain information on the modes of transportation needed for the people of the water village. This will give us a better picture of how to enhance public transportation in the future.
"The BSB Master Plan on transportation will complement the Brunei Land Transport Master Plan. The study will also touch on road safety aspects and environmental issues," he added.
The survey is being carried out over a four-day period, while an additional four days will be spent on traffic count.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin