Traffic optimization

Traffic Optimization are the methods by qui time stopped in road traffic (PARTICULARLY, at traffic signals ) is reduced.

Need for traffic optimization

Texas Transportation Institute travel estimates between 17-55 hours of delay per person per year on congestion on the streets. [1] Traffic device optimization hence becomes a significant aspect of operations.


Several techniques exist to reduce delay of traffic. Generally the algorithms attempt to reduce delays (user time), stops, exhaust gas emissions , or some other measure of effectiveness. Many optimization software are geared towards pre-timed coordinated systems.

Normally optimization is a challenging and expensive task, because the sources for traffic monitoring have been limited to inductive loops , cameras or manually counting. However, due to recent advances in information technology, mobile devices with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi communication are becoming more common, enabling real-time traffic monitoring and adjustments to traffic signal timing.

By placing sensors along roads, tracking Bluetooth and Wi-Fi devices in passing vehicles, the solution is able to accurately detect and record how long it takes a car to drive along a corridor, segment by segment and in total. This is a historical data for traditional timing methods, but also for real-time transitions among programs.

Real time traffic control

Several systems are capable of monitoring the arrival and adjustment of timings based on the detected inputs. Traffic Detectors may range from Metal Detectors to Detectors that use Image Detection. Metal detectors are the most popular in use. Image detection devices exhibit numerous problems including degradation during bad weather and lighting.

Traffic information systems:

  1. Only the main street – semi-actuated system
  2. Both hands and cross streets – fully actuated system.

The above method is primitive real-time signal optimization at best. This method will optimize one traffic signal at a time. However, in the real world, a motorist’s commute involves driving through multiple signals. Thus, multiple traffic signals need to be collectively synchronized in order to be effective. One such system that has gained significant popularity in the United States is InSync.


It has been suggested that the benefits of traffic optimization have never been scientifically justified. It inherently favors motorized traffic over alternate modes such as pedestrians , bicyclists , and transit users. [2] It is suggested that an alternate approach could involve traffic calming , and a conceptual focus on the movement of people and goods rather than vehicles.

It can be argued That Traffic optimization inherently calms traffic due to discouraging speeding and acceleration and deceleration limits THUS Reducing the noise pollution produced by vehicles.

See also

  • Intelligent Traffic Systems


  1. Jump up^
  2. Jump up^ Michael J. Vandeman, “Is Traffic Signal Synchronization Justifiable?”], April 15, 1994

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