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Horizontal/Vertical Stoplights

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I've noticed that different areas in Florida mount traffic lights differently. Some areas are predominantly horizontal and some are almost exclusively vertical.

SE Florida (specifically, Broward, Miami-Dade, and Monroe Counties)
Florida Panhandle (haven't been there enough to be more specific)
Gainesville area (and perhaps other surrounding counties)

SW Florida
Orlando/Central Florida
Space/Treasure Coasts

Why is this? Is it dependent on FDOT district, county roads department, or just the local contractors? Indian River County has been installing horizontal lights on all new construction lately, and there are a few rogue horizontal lights in Palm Bay that look like they were installed by a different contractor. Horizontal makes sense from a wind-load perspective, so I'm surprised more areas aren't going to that.

It's usually due to winds resistance or to a lesser extent, aesthetics.  Why each area does it different just depends.  I wonder the specific reasons myself at times.  Here in the N.O. area the suburbs exclusively mounts all lights vertically with maybe one exception.  For years the City of N.O. has been mounting the main overhead lights horizontally with pedestal and turn lights vertically.  Now this year they have started mounting vertical lights that hang from the mast arm vs being fixed directly to the pole (I'm assuming it's for wind resistance).  Whatever the case the new look is extremely tacky.

In many places in the mid atlantic and northest, signals are mounted horizntally when facing a low clearance bridge.

Decatur Street SE @ Collins St. SE, Atlanta, Georgia

Be well,


All of Texas does horizontal mounting except San Antonio and Amarillo. And I HATE it! You get a windy day and they get turned away from their orientation, or worse, they get knocked off the poles and dangle by the wires. One near where I live did that over the weekend on the Westpark Tollway frontage (FM 1093 here in Ft. Bend County). I'm guessing this has to do with how they are mounted. Houston needs to fix it, or better yet, start mounting vertical like normal places do it.

New Mexico also does pretty much exclusively horizontal mounting as well. HATE IT!!!


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