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Traffic Lights Get Smarter and Driving Gets More Efficient!

The Taipei City Traffic Engineering Office (TEO) is to test smart signaling on the 10 main intersections (including 9 in the area of “Section 2, Tiding Boulevard—Lequn 1st Road” and the stretch from “Section 2, Tiding Boulevard—Gangqian Road” to “Section 2, Jiuzong Road—Lane 11, Section 6, Minquan East Road” in the Neihu Technology Park (NTP) and “Section 3, Kangning Road-Ankang Road,” “Section 3, Kangning Road—Nanhu Bridge” in the Nangang Software Park (NSP)) and “Wenlin North Road—Wenlin North Road, Lane 75/94 (Zhong-zheng Senior High School),” Beitou District to make them smarter beginning from December 2019.
There are two types of smart signaling: one is the dynamic signaling at the 9 main intersections in NTP and NSP (Tiding Boulevard, Jiuzong Road, Donghu Interchange), they collect instant traffic volumes from 57 vehicle detectors and optimize the signal timing every 5 minutes to maintain continuous arterial road traffic by minimizing travel time, time delay and stoppage frequency at intersections, and improving driving efficiency of arterial roads and overall corridor traffic performance.
The other is the inductive signaling at the intersection of “Wenlin North Road—Wenlin North Road, Lane 75/94 (Zhong-zheng Senior High School).” The intersection spans a little wider and is required to leave time for pedestrians' safe crossing while minimizing cars on the mainline wasting time to idle through red lights in off-peak hours. An AI image system is employed to detect both pedestrian and vehicle traffic on the branch line; if none is there, the green light for the mainline would remain intact; if there are cars on the branch line but not pedestrian, the least amount of green light time would be reserved for cars while the red light for pedestrian remain intact; in case there are pedestrians on the branch line, the AI image identification device or the manual button (triggered by pedestrians) shall give a green light for pedestrians to cross the intersection (or auto extended time in seconds to protect their safe crossing). In case the branch line has heavier traffic, the same AI system may also extend its green light time to ease traffic.
The aforementioned intersections feature a button for manual triggering by pedestrians and reminder signs for pedestrians in line with the inductive signaling system installed. The TEO is calling upon pedestrians at the Wenlin North Road intersection to wait for the pedestrian green light (either by pressing the button or not) and passing through the intersection according to traffic lights to maintain traffic safety.
The project of the dynamic signaling intersection reduces overall travel time by 10%, average delay time by 14.5%; the inductive signaling system cut wasted red light waiting time on the mainline in the night by 35%, travel time by 29% and average delay time by 75%. All these contribute in improved driving efficiency and biomass energy and carbon reduction.
As the traffic control system’s infrastructure is getting more comprehensive, the TEO is planning to erect the smart signaling system at other intersections of Taipei City if the good effect can last. The aim is to shape up a city of efficiency, low carbon, and green energy.
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