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UAlbany Data Scientists lead initiative to improve transportation

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ALBANY, N.Y.—The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has selected two UAlbany data scientists to lead a multi-state initiative to advance transportation planning.

UAlbany associate professor and Lewis Mumford Center Director Catherine T. Lawson and the Albany Visualization and Informatics Lab (AVAIL) were selected to advance transportation planning in areas such as truck routing, pollution control, travel safety, traffic patterns, and more.

The UAlbany team has been awarded an initial $150,000 from FHWA's Transportation Pooled Fund Program.

"Back in 1998, I met with Federal Highway Administration staff to talk about a future where archived Weigh-in-Motion (WIM) data would be visualized to enhance evidence-based transportation planning – and the future is finally here," said Lawson, who is chair of UAlbany's Department of Geography and Planning.

In the new FHWA project, AVAIL's lead programmer, Alex Muro, will work with UAlbany computer science graduate students to create new open source transportation planning tools from WIM data.

AVAIL will create software to enable government agencies, academic institutions, private industry and the general public to benefit from improved data visualization and analysis.

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