European ITS Framework Architecture (FRAME)

The European ITS Framework Architecture is also called the FRAME Architecture or is referred to as FRAME. On the basis of the FRAME Architecture it is possible to develop consistent architectures for various ITS systems and services that can communicate with each other at the urban, regional, national and international level.

The FRAME Architecture is a set of high level requirements and functionalities on the basis of which interoperable ITS systems and services can be designed. FRAME gives its users “a full freedom” because it does not impose any restrictions on designing ITS systems and services – it shows “what” needs to be done and not “how”.

Context diagram for the FRAME Architecture


The methodology of working with the FRAME Architecture, supported by the use of available IT tools, allows the user to:

  • define high level requirements and describe functionalities for the planned ITS
  • develop an architecture of an intelligent transport system composed of functions, data repositories and data flows;
  • divide an architecture of the designed system into subsystems and modules;
  • designate the owners of individual parts of the system and / or assign responsibility for their maintenance and / or service to specific entities / organisations;
  • define the requirements for communication between the elements of a system.

The FRAME Architecture has been designed to be used in EU member states, therefore it is adapted to the subsidiarity rules prevailing in the EU, and its use does not imply the existence of a specific infrastructure, technology or organisational structure. The European Commission recommends the use of the FRAME Architecture because it greatly facilitates the development of complete architectures for intelligent transport systems and services that are consistent with EU standards and directives.

The FRAME Architecture has been used in intelligent transport systems in Austria, France, Great Britain and Italy as well as in many other countries, also outside of Europe.

The main advantage of using the FRAME Architecture

  • Developing an architecture of an ITS based on the FRAME Architecture before its implementation helps to ensure the stakeholders and convince the decision-makers that this system:
    • is planned in a logical manner;

    • will work with other systems based on the FRAME Architecture;

    • will include agreed ITS functionalities;
    • can be expanded in the future;

    • should meet the expectations of users, decision makers and other stakeholders.
  • The use of the FRAME Architecture contributes to the achievement of ITS interoperability, including helping to find and describe points of information exchange with the system’s environment at the stage of architecture development.

  • The use of the FRAME Architecture favours an open market because it does not impose usage of particular technologies or supplier products.

The FRAME Architecture official website

At htttp:// you can find information, materials and tools created to work with the FRAME Architecture.

Source: Grochowski, A., The FRAME Architecture in ITS projects. Description of the ITS architecture development methodology, issued by Centre for EU Transport Projects, 2017; ;


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