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Traffic Light Generic

NJDOT Traffic Signal Optimization Contract, Various, NJ

Updated traffic signals have decreased travel times to Long Beach Island on the Jersey Shore by 66% during the peak summer travel season. A 7-mile backup was reduced to several hundred feet.

Services Provided
New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT)
Project Contact

Relief for Nine Congested New Jersey Routes

Left unchecked, congestion in New Jersey, America’s most densely populated state, threatens to stifle the economy and adversely impact the quality of life. That’s why the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) frequently retimes traffic signals. Under a task-order contract with NJDOT, Urban analyzed and optimized more than 150 signals, located in nine congested corridors. Projects ranged in scope from seven signals in a grid to 30 signals along a major Jersey shore arterial. 


These projects entailed data collection, including GPS-based travel time studies; field investigations; update of signal plans; model calibration and simulation analysis for peak traffic periods; signal optimization; implementation and field adjustments; and cost/benefit analysis after the new signal timings were implemented.


Faster Travel to Jersey Shore

One of the most successful tasks was the new signal timing for the Route 72 corridor. The updated signals have decreased travel times to Long Beach Island on the Jersey Shore by 66% during peak summer periods and reduced a 7-mile backup to several hundred feet.


We also researched and designed adaptive signal control technology (ASCT) systems for candidate corridors. This included the development of traffic-responsive parameters and thresholds for the Route 70 corridor, which is connected by fiber optic cable to a NJDOT Traffic Operations Center in Cherry Hill.  

The results are in...

  • Commutes feel 10% to 15% faster
  • Drivers have to stop at 5% to 20% fewer traffic signals
  • Wait times are 10% to 20% less
*Average results of signal optimization projects completed under this contract, according to computer models.


  • Presented optimization strategies for Route 72 at 2014 Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) Northeastern District Annual Meeting
  • Adaptive signal system research and analysis
  • Traffic counts and data collection
  • Field investigations and MUTCD compliance analysis
  • Travel time studies
  • Traffic-responsive timing plans
  • Simulation and capacity analysis
  • Cost/benefit analysis