‘Automatic’ traffic signals to reduce snarls between Bakhtawar Chowk and Huda City Centre from today

Gurugram: 13 Feb, 2019(Hindustan Times)

Smart signals assess traffic based on realtime flow and, hence, have a far higher accuracy than existing signals. This means that there will be lesser waiting time, lower fuel consumption and thus, lesser air pollution Sewa Ram, transport expert.

GURUGRAM : The Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) is going to launch four ‘smart’ traffic signals between the Huda City Centre (HCC) and Bakhtawar Chowk today. The adaptive traffic control system, the first of its kind feature in the city, is expected to streamline mobility on the high-traffic stretch.

MCG officials said cameras at these signals are equipped with in-built sensors to assess the volume of oncoming traffic which will turn green depending on the traffic density.

Officials of the Japanese firm which is the project concessionaire, Kyosan Electric Manufacturing Company Limited, information about traffic volume is automatically exchanged between different intersections through sensors, cameras and optical fibres. Depending on the volume, lights will automatically turn green or red for approaching traffic to keep the traffic flow streamlined, they said.

The move is expected to reduce waiting time at signals as the light will remain green for a longer time at the carriageway with the heavier volume of traffic.

On the 3.5-km stretch, the signals will be installed at Kanhai Chowk , Sector 30/31 dividing road, Sector 31/45 traffic light and at Bakhtawar Chowk signal.

“Traffic is not uniform across the day, and volume keeps fluctuating at the various carriageways. The current traffic signals are not equipped to automatically account for the fluctuations (as they are programmed) and hence smart traffic signals are being adopted to disperse traffic efficiently depending on the volume and save time,” MCG commissioner Yashpal Yadav said.

Yadav said that depending on the success of the pilot project, the system may be adopted at different stretches.

The MCG and the concessionaire have been looking to install this feature since August 2016. The two parties had looked at introducing this system at three signals on a portion of the Golf

Course Road—between the DLF Phase 1 intersection and Ghata crossing. “But, the proposal was shelved as the stretch did not have optical cable,” Kyosan advisor Ajit Dua said.

“In a meeting with the MCG officials in early 2017, it was decided that since the project was in the pilot stage, it did not make sense to lay optical cables along the Golf Course Road. We instead recommended installation of the system between Bakhtawar Chowk and HCC since optical cables had already been placed here. Hence, we proceeded with the project on this six-lane stretch,” Dua said.

Sewa Ram, an urban transport systems design expert and a faculty member at the Delhibased School of Planning and Architecture, said the system is more reliable than manual or the pre-fixed signal time intervals and can also help reduce pollution.

“Smart signals assess traffic based on real-time flow and hence, have a far higher accuracy than existing signals. This means that there will be lesser waiting time, lower fuel consumption and thus, lesser air pollution. However, MCG officials need to analyse its effectiveness on this stretch before replicating the same at other points as there may encounter unforeseen complications such as malfunctions and software-related problems,” Sewa Ram said.

MCG officials said Union minister Rao Inderjit Singh and Mayor Madhu Azad will jointly inaugurate this project from Kanhai Chowk at 3.30pm today.