Traffic Signal Systems Upgrade Project, Phase 1
The project consists of upgrading signal systems west of the Olentangy River, along Sandusky Street, Williams Street (US 36), Central Avenue (Ohio 37), and London Road. A second phase of upgrades, which would include the traffic signals on the east side of the Olentangy River, is also planned and will be designed and constructed as funds become available.
This project was initiated by the Fire Department’s desire to reduce emergency response times to better serve our community. The City was awarded $2.5 million in federal dollars through the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission in 2017. The Fire Department is funding the local matching contribution. This project includes system-wide upgrades to communications infrastructure (utilizing a mix of existing fiber, new expanded fiber and wireless), improved signal timing, upgrades of antiquated traffic signal controllers, installation of traffic monitoring cameras, expanded emergency vehicle preemption, and upgraded pedestrian signals and curb ramps where necessary to meet ADA standards.
Planning and design work is under way. Design work will be completed in 2020 and the project is scheduled for construction in 2022.
The existing traffic control system is circa 1990s technology. Upgrades will allow the system to respond more effectively to variable traffic conditions. The purpose of the project is to reduce congestion and improve safety. The system upgrades are expected to achieve the following measurable benefits:
- Reduce congestion by decreasing delay at each intersection and improve overall travel time through each corridor by installing equipment that can communicate “real time” traffic conditions for the entire system, not by isolated intersection or roadway segments.
- Reduce emissions and improve quality of life along these corridors, particularly during rush hours.
- Increase safety by reducing the accident types that typically result from congestion.
- Improve safety and reduce congestion during power outages by installing uninterruptable power supplies.
- Improve safety and reduce emergency response times by installing emergency vehicle preemption equipment which allows the signal to grant a green signal to approaching emergency vehicles, allowing first responders safer and quicker passage through the intersections and the corridor.
- Improve safety and reduce congestion into the future by installing equipment with technology features that are compatible with autonomous and connected vehicles. These vehicle types are here today and more will be coming. These technologies provide an opportunity to extend the life of the City and MORPC’s investment into this essential / critical infrastructure project.
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