Alfonso de la Parra del Valle

Alfonso de la Parra del Valle

Interoperability and System Standards

in Mexico


SCT – Unidad de Autopistas de Cuota,

Toronto, May 2005

I. Overview of toll roads in Mexico




– Roads, players,

– History

– Government Programs

Toll systems history in Mexico

– Descriptive system classification

Existing systems

– How has interoperability been attended

– How has homologation been dealt with

New Context

– New toll systems specifications

– What we expect to get from them

I. Overview of Existing Toll Roads in



– Caminos y Puentes Federales de Ingresos

(Capufe)) is the toll road operation company. It is

owned by the Federal Government.

– FARAC is the trust that is currently the

concessionaire of most of the network.

– Unidad de Autopistas de Cuota is the DOT branch

for toll roads.

– IAVE is the existing ETC supplier in Mexico.

– I&D is the new ETC supplier project for Mexico.

National Network of Roads and Toll


48,400 Km of the road network is under the Federal

Government’s s control and budget.

The network has 14 major corridors,

– With a total of 19,250 km (40%) in length,

– They gather 54% of the interurban traffic.

The Toll Road Network is 6,160 km in length,

– 74 toll roads and 41 bridges.

– The total traffic averages 850,000 vehicles a day.

– The growth rate is 5.7% a year.

– Most of them are on the major corridors.

The 1989-1994 1994 presidential period and its


Most of the existing toll road network was constructed

during 1989-1994 1994 (3,700 km, 60% of today’s


– Private Concessions: 49

– Five of these were bridges

These were added to three existing private concessions (240

km) and to Capufe’s network (+- 1,000 km.)

When the crisis stroke Mexico in 1994-95, 95, the

expectance of growth in the country decreased and

so did the toll revenue.

– Revenue was not enough to service debt

– major maintenance of the infrastructure was not possible.

In 1997 the government decided to rescue 23


The rescue implied

– The definition of the quantities for buyouts,

– To give the concessions to the Farac,

– To establish a contract with Capufe by the

Farac to attend toll collection and

maintenance of the toll roads (operations),

– To modify operative and toll fare strategies

to promote the usage of the rescued


– To manage funds to re-finance the debt,

endorsed by the Federal Government.


Toll Roads

Institutions 13% Currently Related to Toll Roads

The Mexican Government currently has the

operations and maintenance of a high percentage of

the Toll Road Network, as follows:


Capufe’s direct management (30 bridges, 3 minor toll


Concessioned to the Road Rescue Fund (Farac(


(44 toll roads + 3 bridges, 4,407 Km.).

Toll Bridges

The rest of the federal toll concessions is divided as




– Concessions to private companies and financial

institutions (18 toll roads + 3 bridges, 1,287 Km.)

– Concessions to the States in the Union (9 toll

roads + 4 bridges, 354 Km.)

Federación Privadas Estatales


Federation States Private

Government Sector’s s Program 2001 -


Strategies directly linked to the infrastructure


– To promote the usage and benefits of the

technology and the information.

– To improve the transportation infrastructure


– To strengthen and to follow the supervision of the

toll road concessions.

– To promote the introduction of new payment

methods, different to cash.

– The construction of information systems to

improve the performance of the system and to

attend the most frequent needs of the users.

II. Toll Systems in MéxicoM

What is Interoperability?

The feature that allows a system to

accept other systems, sub – systems or

components that perform different tasks

and share with them its own

components, functions or data.

– Many times it is necessary to include new

devises, sensors or components useful

only to the dependent sub – systems.

What is Homologation ?

– Homologation is the authority’s s or market’s

formalization of the necessity to have

systems that produce similar data, that are

compatible among them.

– That all existing systems may accept

commercially generic components, not

proprietary, to achieve economies of scale.

Three big toll system categories:

Manual Collection Toll Systems

– The vehicle must stop to pay.

– No coin machines in Mexico, not included in this description.

Combined or Mixed Toll Systems

– A combination of manual toll systems with cash payment

and some kind of electronic ID, such as smart card, AVI,

proximity card, etc.

– The vehicle may not need to stop. The speed in the point of

the transaction is very low. (less than 5 km/h)

Automatic Toll Systems

– Without a toll collector.

– ETC, either in a controlled slow speed barrier or the barrier

less systems. “Open Tolling”.

We also classified the systems by


Low Technology Systems:

– Basic functions, with only transaction data and

some tools.

– Forming

data packages, low desegregation


– Low configurability of its components. Fixed

configuration. You live with the original

configuration through all of the equipment’s s life.

– You define your operations based on how the

system works, instead of using it as a tool.

– Very few lane components and low capacity to

integrate new ones.

Low Tech System configuration in Mexico

Mid Technology Systems

– The “in

– between” low and high.

High Technology Systems

– Functions that check the overall performance of

the system.

– Powerful audit tools.

– Data desegregation and function reports.

– High level of data security.

– High integration level.

– Highly configurable.

– Toll operations and management tools.

– And many others


High Tech System Lane Configuration

To determine the kind of design a system has, you have

to consider:

Quantity and quality of the system’s s functions,

How elaborate is the software is,

The data precision and security,

Levels of desegregation of data,

Its capacity to interact with other systems,

Modularity and configuration,

Its capacity to integrate the system into operative

groups, such as various toll roads managed by one


The toll operations management tools included in the


III. Types of Toll Systems in MéxicoM

Mexico started with simple manual systems.

They have become more sophisticated.

Most systems are mixed; they all have

manual toll collection and some electronic


Its sophistication is from low to medium in

most cases.

A group of around 12 toll roads are operating

with more sophisticated systems.

There aren’t t any “Open Toll” operations in

Mexico yet.


The results is in accordance with the

previously described groups; there are

systems that can hardly gather enough

information beside the strictly necessary

for collection purposes.

When in a group of toll roads there is

one with limited capacity of data

generation, the whole group suffers.

Capufe’s Modernization Project

A group of toll roads with a more advanced system.

Represents a 20% of the total of Capufe’s systems.

They may interface with the ETC systems from the

plaza system, not having to use the ETC supplier’s

lane controller.

Its database features are more advanced, audit

processes and management support are more


Modular architecture and a high level of security.

System design and supplier is French, Thales,

Capufe owns the whole system, including the source


IAVE, Currently Active ETC

National System

It is normally a lane controller and an antenna installed

on the toll collection lane.

Valid transactions are indicated through an interface to

the manual collection system’s s lane controller.

– When the lane has a collector, the collector accepts the


Each system works independently, each one has its

own accountability functions.

Capufe pays the supplier on a per transaction basis, the

supplier proves was charged by IAVE.

The technology used by this system is 915MHz, ATA /

T21 from Amtech.

The New ETC System,

Owned by I&D

Similar deployment as IAVE has. It’s s supposed to

substitute IAVE, not live together.

It is also set in paralel. . It interfaces similarly as the

previous one.

I&D pays for the transactions that Capufe requests.

There is also a per transaction fee.

The technology used by this system is 5.8GHz, CEN

from Kapsch, , de Austria and integrated by Tecsidel,

from Spain.

Homologation Efforts

Capufe has achieved homologation by doing

massive purchases of systems to the same

vendor. There are three toll collection

systems vendors for Capufe, , (40 – 40 – 20%)

These systems report to regional offices,

where the information is gathered and the

reports are processed.

– The system at this level does the interface with

Capufe’s central system, designed by them.

The regional system transfers information

electronically to the central offices. (Satellite)


To achieve interoperability, Capufe has

implemented simple interfaces and time


The secondary systems inform the main

system about a valid transaction.

Each system registers transactions and

keeps its own records.

Generally the transaction number is not a

tracking reference to conceal multiple

system’s s readings.

Besides this described interface, both

systems are autonomous.

Current Lane Configuration

Interoperability in today’s s scheme

Each system names

the transaction

Lane with higher level of sophistication


Interoperability in the new scheme


Only one name for the transaction,

For all of the systems

IV: New Context

In order to improve the toll operations and data

acquisition in toll roads, the UAC (Toll Road

Authority) has submitted new specifications

for toll systems. We pretend to:

– Improve revenue colletion

at toll plazas by

reducing shrinkage potential.

– Improve data security.

– Gather more data related to traffic and revenue.

– Change the interoperability and homologation’s

theory to build a more solid system base.

– Establish the technological base for more modern

methods of toll collection.

– Setting the technological base for Open Tolling.

New Specifications

Higher sophistication level, capable of

migrating from mixed systems to automatic

ETC systems using the same basic structure.

Not needing to replace the system.

Systems must allow changes of operation

structure at various levels, and so they are

able to take new devices to improve or

enhance its performance.

To contain more sophisticated devices

to verify the data in audit processes.

High level of desegregation,

– Capability of emitting various reports,

– To modify formats and

– To have automatic emission / transmission.

High level of data acquisition devices to

help with the generation of statistics to

improve road planning and operations.

High efficiency levels of cash management, achieved


– The high security in the data.

– Avoiding various identification of the same


– More sophisticated audit and verification


Toll collection by various methods of payment.

– Various methods may be applied, different from


– Allow the account management and to create


– May interface with National ETC projects from the

plaza system, without duplicating the equipment at

the lane level.

Purpose of the changes in the


With the new configuration, the toll plazas may

be used for data acquisition, as follows:

– A toll plaza has an economic reason to exist.

– May change or enhance vehicle classification to

include more variables.

– Transaction data may contain statistical

information, not particularly related to tolls.

– It allows the operator to better manage traffic

through tolls and other measurements and

achieve best performance for the user.

– Allows the operator to perform national or

regional programs related to governmental

or commercial affairs. (special season

discounts, etc.)

– Contribute as a source of accurate data for

the ITS systems to service the users.

– Contribute with accurate data for the

authorities about the usage of the road to

better plan the future communication



Systems in Mexico may be classified as

medium technology with a steady advance

toward more sophistication in the last few


There have been changes that have

improved the performance of the systems, but

the size of the major customer sets the pace

towards its enhancement.

The new specifications start a path toward a

new, more open way of interoperation and


It will gather more data to the toll systems

operators, users and authorities.

More security devices to keep data safe.

Homologation through open architecture in

the system design.

The interoperability through the concentration

of data at the plaza level and submitting data

in general data languages to be used by

other systems.

Sets the technological base for open tolling



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