tech traffic signals needed near Woodbury Common

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tech traffic signals needed near Woodbury Common

CENTRAL VALLEY Anyone who has tried to get in and out of the Woodbury Common outlets on a busy Saturday or Sunday, especially around the holidays, knows what a nightmare that can be. There are safety issues at other times, said Senator Charles Schumer, who addressed the issue during a stop at Central Valley Elementary School on Route 32, across from the main entrance to the sprawling complex.

the heck am I stuck in the parking lot? pondered the senator. all because of one light that doesn work. It more than an inconvenience, said Schumer, noting a recent fatality involving a pedestrian trying to cheap jerseys cross Route 32 to get to work.

Schumer urged the Federal Highway Administration to work with NYS DOT and local Orange County officials to develop a plan to upgrade traffic signals at the Woodbury Common Rte. 17 exit through an adaptive traffic control technology. In contrast to standard traffic signals which have pre programmed timing plans, adaptive traffic control technology allows traffic signals to adjust the timing to respond to the current traffic patterns thereby helping to ease congestions during all times of the day, but most importantly during peak hours.

The senator argued the technology is a relatively cheap investment that could go a long way towards alleviating traffic on Rte. 17, and there is no reason for continued delay in making the upgrade.

still sticking to their 2017 date to get this done, noted Schumer. think the new technology could be put in, in the next several months, if it approved, so it would save a lot of time, save a lot of aggravation, bring more economic development to this area, and perhaps even save lives. He likened the situation to a heart with clogged arteries The traffic along Rtes. 32 and 17 at the Exit 131 interchange has been a major problem for the past few decades, causing gridlock and congestion in Monroe, Blooming Grove, Harriman, Chester and other local communities. Schumer also underscored that this new traffic signal technology will not only lessen travel times by 10 percent or more according to the FHWA, but increase public safety in the process.

Adaptive signal control technology uses traffic sensors to collect data in real time, then analyze those data to find improvements that can be made to the signal timing, and then implement those changes. This process is repeated every few minutes.

According to the FHWA, on average, adaptive signal control technology improves travel time by more than 10 percent. In areas with particularly outdated signal timing, improvements can be 50 percent or more. Schumer explained that any decrease in congestion saves travelers on fuel costs and increases the productivity of major retail centers like Woodbury.

Schumer explained that the FHWA can provide technical support to set up the new technology, and the implementation and operating costs for ASCT is eligible for Federal reimbursement from National Highway System and Surface Transportation Program funding, which is available to New York. Schumer said that he would pursue potential federal pots of funding for this project, like the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program, if deemed eligible. Schumer said the funding could also come from the state or even local budgets since it a relatively cheap measure. The cost of adaptive signal control technology typically ranges between $6,000 $50,000 per intersection depending on the current infrastructure, communications and detection requirements of the selected system.

Categories: Columns

Added: Monday, June 7th, 2010 at 0:58


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