Live Labs Blog

The ADEPT SMART Places Live Labs Programme is a two-year, £22.9m project funded by the Department for Transport that will run until Spring 2021. This page will give regular updates on the project.

Latest post

Smarter Suffolk meets Canadian technology

8 June 2021

The Smarter Suffolk Live Lab has joined forces with Canadian technology firm, LED Roadway Lighting Ltd. Project Manager, Brigitte Sodano-Carter, of Suffolk County Council takes us through this exciting collaboration and the wide ranging use of sensors in their trial.

We are so pleased to have Liveable Cities (a division of LED Roadway Lighting Ltd) involved in our project, providing 25 Smart City micro-sensors for use in the Suffolk trial. They are also involved in trials in Canada, the United States, and Sweden, bringing a timely and international perspective to our smart sensors trial. 

The cleantech company designs its sensors for use on public streetlights so are well suited to the needs of the Suffolk trial. They have supplied five air quality sensors and twenty traffic speed and volume sensors along with the related software, and they are providing us with online training to support their installation and use.

The data collected and insights offered will support and improve the trial’s ultimate aim to improve community decision-making. 

Once installed, the sensors collect data 24/7, 365 days of the year and report the data back to a specially developed software program using the existing cellular mobile communication network. The software provides access to data that can be organized into actionable reports for review and to support decision-making. Radars for speed monitoring will give us real-time reporting and vehicle speeds mapping, and again enable us to use evidence-based information to highlight problem locations for improved traffic speed enforcement where needed. 

Traffic Flow monitoring measures the amount of traffic flowing past the sensors at different times of the day, using 85th percentile traffic data. This type of data will provide us with useful insights to support long-term traffic trend analysis and future town planning that will have a further impact on traffic volumes. 

Air Quality Micro‐Sensors actively monitor and report pollution levels that can have negative impacts on human and environment health in an area where the sensor is present. Reporting air quality metrics like PM2.5 will enable us to deploy evidence‐based decision-making for urban mobility planning.

This year, we are working with a further 12 different sensor technology providers to test the performance of seven different types of sensor in different urban, rural and coastal locations across Suffolk. More than 100 sensors have now been installed so that we can evaluate how they perform, as well as understanding the trends emerging from the data we receive. The types of sensor installed include radar cameras to measure vehicle classifications and volumes, air quality monitors, wind speed/direction gauges, road surface temperature sensors, gully monitoring sensors, grit and litter bin sensors, and bridge impact sensors.

The Smarter Suffolk Live Lab is being supported by project partners at BT Adastral Park and the University of Suffolk. The trial runs until the end of October 2021. To find out more about the project’s first year highlights in 2020, visit:

More posts

  • 20 December 2019

    Live Labs blog: project update - Staffordshire doing things differently

    Here in the Staffs Live Lab we are trying to do things a little differently! Over the last two months, we’ve been running the first phase of our Challenge Creation, based around our two focus areas - air quality and intelligent rural mobility. We're aiming to identify the critical issues faced by the county and then develop the tangible challenges that we can release to the SME market.  

    Read more >

  • 3 December 2019

    Live Labs blog: speed dating – the Live Labs way

    Two weeks ago, ADEPT held its annual Autumn Conference in the beautiful city of Bath. Speaking to a packed house of local authorities and corporate partners, Darryl Eyers, the ADEPT President, set the scene for the overall theme ‘Well-connected places in a changing world’.

    The two-day conference covered everything from environmental issues to Brexit, but showcasing innovation and new approaches underpinned it all. For our eight Live Labs, this meant the second day was their time to shine!

    Read more >

  • 20 November 2019

    Live Labs blog: Hit your targets!

    Monitoring and evaluation might not seem the most exciting aspect of a project, but it is critical.

    For Live Labs, with its focus on scalability, shared learning and value for money, it is essential, both for the performance of each project and the programme as a whole. When done properly, the process provides vital feedback on progress, pinpoints areas that need support, as well as helping to identify and realise all the potential benefits.

    Read more >

  • 15 November 2019

    Live Labs blog: Project update - location, location, location!

    This month’s project update comes from the East of England and the team from Central Bedfordshire. 

    Kinetic walkways, solar carparks and thermal de-icing are the exciting new trials being developed by the Central Bedfordshire Live Labs team.

    Harvesting renewable energy to support the smart highways of the future is the focus for the team, which includes Ringway Jacobs, Eurovia, Colas and PaveGen. When colleagues from the Department for Transport visited last week, the team were keen to show how outline designs were shaping up for the proposed site locations:

    Read more >

  • 22 October 2019

    Live Labs blog: Procurement, innovation and learning

    Giles Perkins, Programme Director, talks about Live Labs learning.

    Innovation is one of those words that means different things to different people. In our case, it’s focused around our four enabling ‘smarts’ of materials, energy, communications and mobility in local roads, but there is so much more to innovation than the things we develop, build, test and implement.

    Read more >

  • 2 October 2019

    Live Labs blog: Project update – Buckinghamshire’s busy summer!

    This month, we've caught up with the Buckinghamshire Live Labs team who are focused on creating a SMART, connected community in Aylesbury Garden Town…

    It’s been a busy time. Taking their project out to the community this summer, the team have been showcasing their plans at the Buckinghamshire County Show and Waterside Festival. The good news is it has been very well received! As well as consulting with stakeholders, the team are working closely with Aylesbury District Council to align the project with the Garden Town's own programme of work.  

    Read more >

  • 25 July 2019

    Live Labs blog: Ready, set… Innovate! ADEPT Live Labs Mobilisation Day

    Earlier this summer the winning eight Live Labs project teams came together in WSP's offices in Birmingham for a Mobilisation Day, kicking off a two year journey of testing and introducing emerging innovations to the UK highway network. The project has been supported by the Department for Transport (DfT) who have provided £22.9m of funding and ADEPT's corporate partners - SNC-Lavalin’s Atkins business, EY, Kier, O2, Ringway and WSP.

    Read more >