The Spanish city of Castelló is in the process of implementing a Low Emission Zone (LEZ) to improve air quality and reduce noise levels and congestion in the city centre.

With harmful emissions from road transport increasing across Europe, cities need to ensure that their citizens are protected from the negative consequences of congestion, noise and air pollution. One solution is Low Emission Zones (LEZs), designated areas in a city or urban region where vehicle access is restricted based on their emission levels. In Castelló, this concept is becoming a reality, as the city is working with Kapsch TrafficCom to implement a LEZ in its central area. The initial contract amount is EUR 1,470,000.

Castelló’s LEZ

“The Castelló system is based on a number plate recognition system, sensors to measure air quality, noise level and a signalling system to inform the user,” says Carolin Treichl, EVP EMENA at Kapsch TrafficCom. “We are also supplying the software to operate and monitor these systems, integrating it into the city’s mobility management toolkit.”

The system will be able to recognise a vehicle’s number plate and verify whether the vehicle associated with that number plate is authorised to enter the LEZ. Once installed, 45 access points to the ZBE will be monitored by cameras capable of reading number plates of moving vehicles and capable of performing video analysis that classifies vehicle types into trucks, buses, vans and commercial vehicles, passenger cars, motorbikes and mopeds.

The platform will be supported by a mobile app which will be available for download from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. The App will allow the creation and management of access authorisations to the LEZ by citizens, companies and other groups.

In addition, 24 sensors will be installed to measure air pollution and noise levels in places with high traffic intensity and sensitive locations, such as schools. The data will also flow into the city’s mobility management system. To this end, the current management system based on Kapsch TrafficCom’s EcoTrafiX™ suite, which currently operates and manages traffic in the city, will be upgraded with new tools and additional information to improve multimodal traffic control strategies.

System advantages

With the new LEZ, Castelló will improve the air quality and health of its citizens, contribute to the fight against the climate crisis and support modal shift towards more sustainable modes of transport, while keeping the city centre free of traffic jams.

Carolin Treichl concludes: “Low Emission Zones can be a powerful lever to significantly reduce traffic emissions. In London, for example, CO2 pollution has been reduced by 20%, while in Milan a similar measure has resulted in an 18% drop in particulate matter. We are delighted to support Castelló on its way to a more liveable and healthy city.”

Kapsch TrafficCom is a globally renowned provider of transportation solutions for sustainable mobility with successful projects in more than 50 countries. Innovative solutions in the application fields of tolling, tolling services, traffic management and demand management contribute to a healthy world without congestion.

With one-stop-shop solutions, the company covers the entire value chain of customers, from components to design and implementation to the operation of systems.

Kapsch TrafficCom, headquartered in Vienna, has subsidiaries and branches in more than 25 countries and is listed in the Prime Market segment of the Vienna Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: KTCG). In its 2022/23 financial year, about 4,000 employees generated revenues of EUR 553 million.

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