When I was 12 years old and in the car with my mom stuck at a red light, we had to wait for the light to turn green even though there wasn’t any traffic coming the other direction. Now, when I’m stuck at a red light waiting for the light to turn green even though there isn’t any traffic coming in the other direction I still have to wait for the light to turn green.
My point is, even though technology has changed just about every aspect of our lives, there has been very little in the way of advances when it comes to traffic signals. Thankfully, that might all change soon.
There is a company called Rapid Flow Technologies developing a system called Surtrac than could change traffic signals forever. The system uses artificial intelligence to help improve traffic flow. According to the company “Surtrac optimizes the performance of signals for the traffic that is actually on the road, improving traffic flow for both urban grids and corridors and leading to less waiting, reduced congestion, shorter trips, less pollution, and happier drivers.”
Here in Atlanta, most traffic signals are timed with data on traffic flow that could be days, months or even years old. The Surtac system uses real time that improves traffic flow immediately.
More from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.