POTTSTOWN PA – Have you noticed if your trip on state Route 100 is a little smoother, maybe even a little more efficient, lately? The folks to thank apparently have stopwatches in their hands.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has used federal money that became available last November (2013) to re-time traffic signals in the Route 100 corridor, the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission reported Monday (June 30, 2014) in its monthly newsletter.
The effort has since helped increase traffic flow and efficiency, the planners said. Travel time on selected portions of 100 during morning peak hours was reduced by 43 percent, it noted, and the number of vehicle stops in the same portions was cut by 75 percent. That means a motorist’s former 30-minute, four-stop drive would have been sliced to 17 minutes and only one stop under the best conditions.
PennDOT described the re-timing effort during a mid-June meeting hosted by the commission and the Pennsylvania and New Jersey chapters of the Intelligent Transportation Society. Re-timing in part involves synchronizing red, yellow and green traffic lights and other controls to improve how vehicles move along a roadway.
“The low-tech and high-tech options of simple re-timing and adaptive signal control can both be implemented with impressive results,” the newsletter reported. “The benefits of signal re-timing can have a large impact on improving traffic movement through the region, and provid(e) a more pleasant commute with less wait time at signals.”
About a hundred regional traffic experts were on hand to hear PennDOT’s good news and study its data. They also learned about other re-timing plans and traffic signal operation improvements from the New Jersey Department of Transportation (it’s using cameras to help with re-timing) and the city of Philadelphia, according to the newsletter.
The commission said it supplies a variety of assistance to transportation systems across the region.
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