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Author Topic: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals  (Read 493 times)

MarylandMichael

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Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« on: November 06, 2017, 12:52:37 PM »

Hey guys!

I don't know if anyone has posted about this but I read recently that Governor Hogan's new $50 MILLION signal upgrade.  The new signals are supposed to synchronize the signals and help traffic flow better.  :clap:

The areas that are getting the new signals are:

MD 2, Annapolis. Annapolis Harbor Center to Tarragon Lane
MD 2, Brooklyn Park. Hammonds Lane to 11th Ave
MD 3, Crofton. MD 450 to St. Stephens Church Road
MD 139, Towson. Kenilworth Ave. to I-695 Outer Loop Ramp
U.S. 40, Catonsville. Coleridge Road to Nuwood Drive
MD 5 Business, Waldorf. Post Office Drive to US 301
MD 228, Waldorf. Western Parkway to US 301
U.S. 301, Waldorf. Chadds Ford Dr. to MD 227
U.S. 1 Business, Bel Air. Tollgate Road to Atwood Road
MD 22, Aberdeen. Technology Way to N. Rogers St./U.S. 40 Ramp
U.S. 1, Jessup/Elkridge. Montgomery Road to MD 175
U.S. 301, Bowie. Excalibur Road to Governors Bridge Road
MD 202, Landover. McCormick Drive to Arena Drive
MD 108, Olney. MD 182 to Volunteer Drive


The ones I am really looking forward to is 3 and 301 because maybe it will be a good alternative to I95 to Virginia.  However, I am disappointed Baltimore won't be receiving any of them.  :-(

Whats your thoughts???  Do you think any other roads should be added.
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jeffandnicole

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2017, 01:11:38 PM »

Do you have any links?

Sometimes it's not new traffic signals, but rather traffic signal controllers and related equipment.  They can sense the traffic on the road and will leave the light on green longer.

They were recently added in NJ as part of the 295/76/42 construction project, to help with traffic flow on alternative corridors.  Because the traffic is just so heavy to begin with, I personally see a limited positive effect with them.  That said, I've seen on Browning Rd at Rt. 168 where, while traffic queues can get quite extensive, they get a nice long green light which clears out most, if not all, of the traffic.  I've also gone quite a distance on US 130 on occasion without a red light.  However, they recently added a new light near the Brooklawn Circles that have really blocked up traffic. It's supposed to be on the new system, but I think the traffic coming from all directions is overwhelming the new light.

Baltimore is probably on a fixed-time grid system with a lot of pedestrian crossings, and this lighting system won't work well with that.
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BrianP

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2017, 01:49:05 PM »

It was already covered in the Maryland thread with a link:
https://www.aaroads.com/forum/index.php?topic=4671.msg2269753#msg2269753
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kalvado

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2017, 01:49:49 PM »

Do you have any links?

Sometimes it's not new traffic signals, but rather traffic signal controllers and related equipment.  They can sense the traffic on the road and will leave the light on green longer.

They were recently added in NJ as part of the 295/76/42 construction project, to help with traffic flow on alternative corridors.  Because the traffic is just so heavy to begin with, I personally see a limited positive effect with them.  That said, I've seen on Browning Rd at Rt. 168 where, while traffic queues can get quite extensive, they get a nice long green light which clears out most, if not all, of the traffic.  I've also gone quite a distance on US 130 on occasion without a red light.  However, they recently added a new light near the Brooklawn Circles that have really blocked up traffic. It's supposed to be on the new system, but I think the traffic coming from all directions is overwhelming the new light.

Baltimore is probably on a fixed-time grid system with a lot of pedestrian crossings, and this lighting system won't work well with that.

The way I think about it, smart electronics need some wiggle room to work. You can give commute traffic more priority over reverse, and a few such things
But once you're close to capacity - and that is not uncommon - the all the wiggle room is gone..
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2017, 02:19:21 PM »

The ones I am really looking forward to is 3 and 301 because maybe it will be a good alternative to I95 to Virginia. 

Not until the HWN Bridge over the  Potomac River is replaced.  Thread here.
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MarylandMichael

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2017, 02:22:05 PM »

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MarylandMichael

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2017, 02:31:23 PM »

Do you have any links?

Sometimes it's not new traffic signals, but rather traffic signal controllers and related equipment.  They can sense the traffic on the road and will leave the light on green longer.

They were recently added in NJ as part of the 295/76/42 construction project, to help with traffic flow on alternative corridors.  Because the traffic is just so heavy to begin with, I personally see a limited positive effect with them.  That said, I've seen on Browning Rd at Rt. 168 where, while traffic queues can get quite extensive, they get a nice long green light which clears out most, if not all, of the traffic.  I've also gone quite a distance on US 130 on occasion without a red light.  However, they recently added a new light near the Brooklawn Circles that have really blocked up traffic. It's supposed to be on the new system, but I think the traffic coming from all directions is overwhelming the new light.

Baltimore is probably on a fixed-time grid system with a lot of pedestrian crossings, and this lighting system won't work well with that.

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.  I remember once I set the navigation to toll free and it took me through that route and I ended up going back on the turnpike because I seemed to get every light and couldn't keep up the speed limit of 55 mph at all so I felt like the ETA was going to be very off.  It would be awesome if they upgraded it to a freeway or extended I295 all the way to the NY border.  Probably would have to be a different # than I295 because of the new PA turnpike interchange.

Is 168 the route that connects the turnpike to the AC expressway? I've also tried that one too and I just take route 42 from I295 due to the amount of traffic lights and only one lane.  I once tried to take route 40 to Atlantic City due to the signage off the Delaware Memorial Bridge, but then the 2 lanes all of a sudden went to one, so why do they advertise that for thru traffic when its pretty much a local road.  You get one person going below the speed limit and all hell breaks loose :banghead:
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jeffandnicole

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2017, 03:17:07 PM »

Do you have any links?

Sometimes it's not new traffic signals, but rather traffic signal controllers and related equipment.  They can sense the traffic on the road and will leave the light on green longer.

They were recently added in NJ as part of the 295/76/42 construction project, to help with traffic flow on alternative corridors.  Because the traffic is just so heavy to begin with, I personally see a limited positive effect with them.  That said, I've seen on Browning Rd at Rt. 168 where, while traffic queues can get quite extensive, they get a nice long green light which clears out most, if not all, of the traffic.  I've also gone quite a distance on US 130 on occasion without a red light.  However, they recently added a new light near the Brooklawn Circles that have really blocked up traffic. It's supposed to be on the new system, but I think the traffic coming from all directions is overwhelming the new light.

Baltimore is probably on a fixed-time grid system with a lot of pedestrian crossings, and this lighting system won't work well with that.

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.  I remember once I set the navigation to toll free and it took me through that route and I ended up going back on the turnpike because I seemed to get every light and couldn't keep up the speed limit of 55 mph at all so I felt like the ETA was going to be very off.  It would be awesome if they upgraded it to a freeway or extended I295 all the way to the NY border.  Probably would have to be a different # than I295 because of the new PA turnpike interchange.

Is 168 the route that connects the turnpike to the AC expressway? I've also tried that one too and I just take route 42 from I295 due to the amount of traffic lights and only one lane.  I once tried to take route 40 to Atlantic City due to the signage off the Delaware Memorial Bridge, but then the 2 lanes all of a sudden went to one, so why do they advertise that for thru traffic when its pretty much a local road.  You get one person going below the speed limit and all hell breaks loose :banghead:

Yep, 168 is that road, but as you found out it's a heavily travelled 1 lane-per-direction roadway with plenty of lights. 

US 40 is the shortest route.  It may not be the fastest route. 
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MarylandMichael

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2017, 04:27:45 PM »

Do you have any links?

Sometimes it's not new traffic signals, but rather traffic signal controllers and related equipment.  They can sense the traffic on the road and will leave the light on green longer.

They were recently added in NJ as part of the 295/76/42 construction project, to help with traffic flow on alternative corridors.  Because the traffic is just so heavy to begin with, I personally see a limited positive effect with them.  That said, I've seen on Browning Rd at Rt. 168 where, while traffic queues can get quite extensive, they get a nice long green light which clears out most, if not all, of the traffic.  I've also gone quite a distance on US 130 on occasion without a red light.  However, they recently added a new light near the Brooklawn Circles that have really blocked up traffic. It's supposed to be on the new system, but I think the traffic coming from all directions is overwhelming the new light.

Baltimore is probably on a fixed-time grid system with a lot of pedestrian crossings, and this lighting system won't work well with that.

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.  I remember once I set the navigation to toll free and it took me through that route and I ended up going back on the turnpike because I seemed to get every light and couldn't keep up the speed limit of 55 mph at all so I felt like the ETA was going to be very off.  It would be awesome if they upgraded it to a freeway or extended I295 all the way to the NY border.  Probably would have to be a different # than I295 because of the new PA turnpike interchange.

Is 168 the route that connects the turnpike to the AC expressway? I've also tried that one too and I just take route 42 from I295 due to the amount of traffic lights and only one lane.  I once tried to take route 40 to Atlantic City due to the signage off the Delaware Memorial Bridge, but then the 2 lanes all of a sudden went to one, so why do they advertise that for thru traffic when its pretty much a local road.  You get one person going below the speed limit and all hell breaks loose :banghead:

Yep, 168 is that road, but as you found out it's a heavily travelled 1 lane-per-direction roadway with plenty of lights. 

US 40 is the shortest route.  It may not be the fastest route.

Personally I prefer to take I295 to AC Exwy and if I'm going to Cape May I take it to GSP, may be tolls and more mileage, but seems faster and is less stressful than getting stuck behind someone going 10 mph under :fight:

The other road I do really like is US 130 like you mentioned because you get a lot of green lights and its mostly 2 lanes.  I don't know why any state route or US route is 1 lane per direction with the amount of people and traffic.  Especially this county road the navigation took me on to go to Cape May, it was all fun and games until route 55 dumped me onto 47/347 and everybody was passing me because I was going 50 mph thinking there was some speed trap. Wish 55 had been extended for people coming from south (in my case MD) or build a bridge from Lewes instead of the ferry.
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NJRoadfan

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2017, 06:03:08 PM »

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.

US-1 already has a closed loop computerized signal system.
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MarylandMichael

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2017, 06:34:35 PM »

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.

US-1 already has a closed loop computerized signal system.

What is that?
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jeffandnicole

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2017, 06:45:03 PM »

New Jersey definitely could use some traffic signal changes especially on US 1 where it parallels the I95 section of the turnpike.

US-1 already has a closed loop computerized signal system.

What is that?

See the title of your thread.
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2017, 11:49:59 PM »

Baltimore isn't getting any because it receives money to maintain its own system. Supposedly, MTA Maryland is going to be modifying the signals to become more bus friendly so it's possible that some corridors' signals will be upgraded then.
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #13 on: November 10, 2017, 03:46:18 AM »

U.S. 50 in Easton & Cambridge would be perfect for this as more and more people retire and move down to OC and the Delaware Beaches.

Although a nice pipe dream would be nice to finish former Governor Schaffer's "Reach the Beach Program" with freeway bypasses of Easton & Cambridge and finish making U.S. 50 an expressway from DC to OC.

I am kind of surprised Gov. Hogan didn't put U.S. 50 on the list, considering he is also responsible for the current widening of Rt. 404 from U.S. 50 to Rt. 16 near Denton.
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2017, 11:09:46 PM »

U.S. 50 in Easton & Cambridge would be perfect for this as more and more people retire and move down to OC and the Delaware Beaches.

Although a nice pipe dream would be nice to finish former Governor Schaffer's "Reach the Beach Program" with freeway bypasses of Easton & Cambridge and finish making U.S. 50 an expressway from DC to OC.

I am kind of surprised Gov. Hogan didn't put U.S. 50 on the list, considering he is also responsible for the current widening of Rt. 404 from U.S. 50 to Rt. 16 near Denton.
Might it be easier to leave US 50 alone and head for old US 213 (MD 331)? This avoids another long crossing being built, because the existing one dumps directly into Cambridge. (Trying to not be fictional - I'm not sure how you accomplish what you seek here, it's either two long bypasses with a long bridge or one longer bypass with a short bridge.)
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2017, 08:43:26 PM »

Although a nice pipe dream would be nice to finish former Governor Schaffer's "Reach the Beach Program" with freeway bypasses of Easton & Cambridge and finish making U.S. 50 an expressway from DC to OC.

I believe that the projects in the Reach the Beach program proposed and largely implemented by the late Gov. William Donald Schaefer were completed. Making all of U.S. 50 in Maryland east of Washington, D.C. a freeway or expressway was not part of the Reach the Beach plan.

A list of those projects was included in a 1987 Washington Post article here and again in 1989 here.

The worst of the chokepoints (I drove them all) were:

  • The at-grade signalized intersections along U.S. 50/U.S. 301 in Anne Arundel County between MD-2 (Ritchie Highway, present-day Exit 27) and the Bay Bridge toll plaza, especially the one at MD-179 (Cape St. Claire, Exit 29);
  • A series of signalized intersections along U.S. 50/U.S. 301 from the eastern landing of the Bay Bridge and the U.S. 50/U.S. 301 "split" at Queenstown in Queen Anne's County (all removed, in spite of a fair amount of nasty opposition from citizens and business owners along this section);
  • The Kent Narrows draw span (now bypassed) also in Queen Anne's County (in the middle of the signals mentioned above);
  • MD-404 through downtown Denton, Maryland (now bypassed);
  • The new Frederick C. Malkus Jr. Bridge (which replaced a two-lane draw span, which still stands (with the drawbridge part removed) as a fishing pier) over the Choptank River north (west) of Cambridge;
  • The two-lane U.S. 50 bridge over the  Nanticoke River at Vienna, Maryland (replaced by a four-lane bridge); and
  • The routing of U.S. 50 through downtown Salisbury (now rerouted onto the Salisbury Bypass, with the former route signed as Business U.S. 50).
« Last Edit: November 11, 2017, 09:28:10 PM by cpzilliacus »
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cpzilliacus

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2017, 08:47:03 PM »

Might it be easier to leave US 50 alone and head for old US 213 (MD 331)? This avoids another long crossing being built, because the existing one dumps directly into Cambridge. (Trying to not be fictional - I'm not sure how you accomplish what you seek here, it's either two long bypasses with a long bridge or one longer bypass with a short bridge.)

MD-331 is indeed a pretty good bypass of Cambridge between Easton and Vienna.

Another winner is to go north on U.S. 301 from U.S. 50 and then work east to MD-313, then south along 313 as far as Mardela Springs.  From there, east on U.S. 50, U.S. 50/MD-90 or MD/DEL-54.

Most of the people going to the Atlantic Ocean beaches in Delaware and Maryland know exactly two routes from Washington and Baltimore east of the Bay Bridge:

U.S. 50 to Ocean City; or
U.S. 50 to MD/DEL-404 to DEL-1.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2017, 09:29:33 PM by cpzilliacus »
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Beltway

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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2017, 11:40:34 PM »

Although a nice pipe dream would be nice to finish former Governor Schaffer's "Reach the Beach Program" with freeway bypasses of Easton & Cambridge and finish making U.S. 50 an expressway from DC to OC.
I believe that the projects in the Reach the Beach program proposed and largely implemented by the late Gov. William Donald Schaefer were completed. Making all of U.S. 50 in Maryland east of Washington, D.C. a freeway or expressway was not part of the Reach the Beach plan.
A list of those projects was included in a 1987 Washington Post article

In addition to the parallel bridge alternate that ultimately was built and opened in 1987, there were eastern bypass alternates studied at Cambridge in the 1970s, one about 4 miles to the east of the old Choptank River bridge, and one about 1.5 mile to the east of the old bridge. 

The latter came close to being selected, but the city lobbied hard for the parallel bridge alternate because they did not want the business district to be bypassed, and this alternate also included the 6-lane widening of US-50 for 2 miles south of the bridge.  It also included a future interchange at US-50 and Meteor Avenue, but that has not yet been built.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2017, 11:44:30 PM by Beltway »
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2017, 06:10:07 AM »

Ooh, I can't wait to see the Bel Air ones. I'm up the road in Forest Hill.
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2017, 03:12:17 PM »

Quote
Most of the people going to the Atlantic Ocean beaches in Delaware and Maryland know exactly two routes from Washington and Baltimore east of the Bay Bridge:

U.S. 50 to Ocean City; or
U.S. 50 to MD/DEL-404 to DEL-1.

Indeed I recall some of the “Reach the Beach” ads saying something like, “There’s no law that says you have to take Route 50 the entire way.”
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Re: Maryland's New "Smart" Traffic Signals
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2017, 04:44:29 PM »

Quote
Most of the people going to the Atlantic Ocean beaches in Delaware and Maryland know exactly two routes from Washington and Baltimore east of the Bay Bridge:

U.S. 50 to Ocean City; or
U.S. 50 to MD/DEL-404 to DEL-1.
Indeed I recall some of the “Reach the Beach” ads saying something like, “There’s no law that says you have to take Route 50 the entire way.”

MD-404 will become considerably more attractive after the 4-laning is completed between US-50 and Denton, then it will be 4 lanes all the way to MD-16.  From DE-404 you can connect to US-13 to US-50, or connect to US-113 to US-50 -- if headed to Ocean City.

 


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