SMART Signal Technologies has installed its new iMonitor software system on 52 intersections for the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), which is intended to improve traffic signal performance along the Twin Cities (Minneapolis-Saint Paul) congested signalized arterial corridors. The software gathers high resolution data for processing into actionable real-time information, in order to measure and monitor signal and corridor performance, using existing traffic signal controllers and detectors that are already installed in the field. Over half the intersections were installed to support MnDOT’s signal timing consultants, Alliant Engineering, to enhance their ability to perform timely and accurate signal timing studies for the agency. The balance was installed directly for the agency.
Using patented technology licensed from the University of Minnesota, the iMonitor system is less expensive than the cost of installing new controller cabinets, which are used to regulate phase changes at signalized intersections. The system allows agencies to monitor signal performance and calculate accurate travel times and queue lengths in real-time, using existing detectors. According to MnDOT metro district traffic engineer, Steve Misgen, the implementation of SMART (Systematic Monitoring of Arterial Road Traffic) Signal’s software in the Twin Cities will result in benefits for both the agency and the motoring public. He said, “Not only will the driving experience improve on a number of highways, because we’ll have better data with which to make signal timing decisions, but the cost of doing so will be driven down by using existing controllers and detectors.”
SMART Signal Tech is a forerunner in the application of Queue Length Processing (QLP) for calculating the wait time at traffic lights. Company co-founder and president, Ken Shain, commented, “Sometimes these queues make up more than half the drive time along a route. Every day counts, as the Federal Highway Administration has said, but the minutes add up, and we’re doing our part to help everyone save as many of them as we can!”
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