More traffic monitoring of Oxford’s smaller roads needs to take place, an Oxford city councillor has said.

Emily Kerr, who represents St Mary’s and the Green Party, has called for the “democratisation of data” and urged resident associations to buy Telraam sensors.

The sensors monitor the different modes of transport along a given street and can be stuck to residents’ windows.

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Oxford Mail: The Telraam sensor uses AI to count passing trafficThe Telraam sensor uses AI to count passing traffic (Image: Telraam)

They collect data on vans, cars, pedestrians and cyclists, with the aim being for policymakers and local authorities to then use this “real-time data” to inform traffic policies.

Oxford Mail: A map of the sensors around Oxford A map of the sensors around Oxford (Image: Telraam)

In Oxford, the sensors have already been placed on Hurst Street, Magdalen Road, Howard Street, Bullingdon Road and many more.

Oxford Mail: City councillor Emily KerrCity councillor Emily Kerr

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Ms Kerr said: “These sensors are important as they allow us to track in real time the number of different vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists passing through small streets.

“I’m really keen on the citizen element to the Telraam sensors as the traffic monitors will mean that people can help support councils through better data collection and they will improve our understanding of local traffic.

“They are like people’s doorbell cameras which have really supported the police in reporting crime or dash cameras when it comes to illegal driving.”

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Ms Kerr used council funds to purchase one of these £200 sensors as she said that “the issue of traffic is hugely important for all my constituents”.


Oxford Mail: Sign up to Ed Halford's free weekly Politics newsletter here Sign up to Ed Halford's free weekly Politics newsletter here (Image: Newsquest)

Regardless of whether people love or hate low traffic neighbourhoods, Ms Kerr said she wanted more people to have access to data which revealed how fast cars were going on side streets.

Oxford Mail: Low traffic neighbourhoods in OxfordLow traffic neighbourhoods in Oxford (Image: Ed Nix)

She said: “I’m disappointed they weren’t around before LTNs were installed.

“They will be crucial for looking at the impact of new traffic measures such as automatic number plate recognition cameras and whether the exemptions are working.

“If we have the ability to measure and see live what is happening, it will allow us to more easily see the correct position to take on traffic measures.”

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Ms Kerr said the data the sensors collected could surprise residents as she was shocked to learn how many pedestrians walked down Bullingdon Road.

Ms Kerr said £200 was a lot of money for one individual to pay for a sensor but she said this was not too costly for a residents association.

On Telraam’s website, it is said that Telraam S2 device has a low resolution camera for privacy reasons and an AI chip for detecting and categorising street users.

The device also has a mobile data connection built in and this relays aggregated and anonymous data to Telraam users.

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Ed specialises in writing political stories for the Oxford Mail and The Oxford Times. 

He joined in the team in February 2023, after completing a History undergraduate degree at the University of York and studying for his NCTJ diploma in London.

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