Colorado DoT taps Ciena for fiber-optic network upgrade

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is upgrading its fiber-optic network with packet optical transport systems and Ethernet switches from Ciena (NYSE: CIEN), the optical transport systems vendor announced. The upgrade to the network, which runs nearly 560 highway miles, is part of Colorado’s Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) program.

The CDOT, which manages a 9146 mile highway system across the state, uses the ITS network to improve transportation safety and the productivity of Colorado citizens. For example, the ITS can provide transportation operations centers with real-time data on traffic volume, speeds, transit schedule status, evolving weather conditions, and other roadway conditions. Transportation agencies also can also the ITS-generated data to predict and alleviate traffic issues.


Thanks to the upgrade program, CDOT will be able to connect more hardened and weatherproof devices to the ITS – up to 20 devices per fiber, Ciena says. Overall the ITS will support about 1500 devices, which will include traffic cameras, traffic message signs, speed sensors and weather monitoring devices. These devices will be linked by an underground fiber-optic cable network to provide up-to-date roadway conditions to travelers and transportation agencies.

See also:  Ohio city councilor questions value of DOT fiber-optic cabling installation

“Colorado residents and the traveling public depend on the Colorado Department of Transportation for real-time traffic and roadway information so that they can enjoy safer and more efficient travels,” says Ryan Rice, director of transportation systems management and operations at CDOT. “With Ciena’s advanced fiber-optic solutions, we will be able to better address safety, mobility, and environmental impacts, while also helping travelers manage their trips, improve operations of transportation agencies, and increase business efficiencies.”

To support data transmission, Ciena will supply its 6500 Packet-Optical Platform and 5100 and 3900 families of switches. It also will deliver its OneControl Unified Management System, as well as a range of professional services via Ciena’s Specialist Services portfolio.

“Traffic volumes are growing significantly on today’s roadways," concludes Jason Phipps, general manager and vice president of North American field operations at Ciena. "Innovative transportation authorities like CDOT recognize the benefits of deploying a scalable and flexible network that supports road sensors, variable message signs, CCTV cameras and other devices to keep travelers and highway safety personnel informed. Ciena’s optical and packet networking solutions help make this possible by creating a more intelligent, programmable and reliable communications system that can scale to support more devices and efficiently monitor activity and issues on the transportation network.”

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