Loughborough led AI transport project shortlisted for prestigious national award

TraffEase Manchester Prize Finalist

An AI transport project led by Computer Science Senior Lecturer Dr Hui Fang has been shortlisted for a national award.

A Loughborough University led AI transport project, intent on helping the UK reach its net-zero targets, has been shortlisted for a national award.

Senior Lecturer in Computer Science Dr Hui Fang has collaborated with Future Leaders Fellow Dr Haitao He from the University’s School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering on the innovative TraffEase project.

TraffEase AI, which aims to effectively manage transport through transforming urban mobility data into actionable intelligence, has been named as a finalist for the inaugural Manchester Prize

The accessible platform aims to use artificial intelligence to integrate multi-source data to provide predictive traffic analytics to inform decision making for efficient and green mobility – ensuring it’s easy to use for non-experts.

The aim of the project is to empower city authorities to effectively manage transport to enhance the journey experience for the public. 

The project is one of ten to receive £100,000 as part of the prize fund initiated by the UK Department for Science, Innovation and Technology.

The money will be used to develop their solution to the UK’s transport issues over the next eight months. Additionally, they’ll benefit from comprehensive support packages, including funding for computing resources, investor readiness support, and access to a network of experts.

A grand prize of £1million will be awarded to the overall winner in Spring 2025.

Dr He said he’s thrilled this project has been recognised: “This is great news for our team and for the project as this extra funding and recognition allows us to accelerate our research and innovation to help cities tackle critical challenges in transport with data intelligence.

“Domestic transport is the UK’s highest emission sector and congestion in our cities is extremely costly. Drastically reducing the dominance of urban cars is imperative to reach our 2050 net-zero targets. It also provides an unparallelled opportunity to create more equitable, inclusive, and accessible cities of the future across the country.”

University Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Professor Dan Parsons said: “I am delighted that the team led by Dr Haitao He, at Loughborough University has been awarded as a finalist in this exciting inaugural Manchester Prize.

“This is prestigious recognition which highlights the innovative research undertaken by the team here in Loughborough across artificial intelligence and its application to address the most pressing global challenges.

“For the final competition I am aware that the team are test-deploying their innovations in collaboration with Nottingham City Council which will lead to much greener and less congested transport at the city scale, underscoring our commitment as a University to benefiting our own regional economy as well as advancing transformative research that will have global impact.”