Traffic signal preemption and priority control give you control over how vehicles move through your city. Having more control means your operations are safer, faster and more efficient. But how can you leverage the investments you’ve made up to today while planning for what you’ll need in the future?

Traffic signal preemption isn’t a new concept. Over the last 50 years, companies have developed myriad ways of communicating between vehicles and infrastructure.

Finding the right solution starts with knowing what you have and what your goals are.

BASIC COMPONENTS OF PRIORITY CONTROL SYSTEMS
On-board Vehicle Systems

Computers, AVL, Preemption Equipment, GPS

Intersection Equipment

Signal Controllers, Preemption Equipment

Communication Networks

Radio, Cellular, Wi-Fi, Fiber, Ethernet

Control Center

ATMS, Hardware and Software IT Systems

There are four major components to consider when deploying a traffic signal priority control system. At the core are onboard vehicle systems, intersection infrastructure, communication networks and control center software and hardware. Your city needs to consider the short and long-term technology plans, taking into account equipment that is already in place.

With more than 50 years of experience in transit signal priority and traffic preemption, Global Traffic Technologies has the expertise you can count on to help you to solve your city’s mobility challenges. GTT can help to deliver the most value and best performance using a distributed, centralized or hybrid system for traffic signal priority control.

PRIORITY CONTROL SYSTEMS ARCHITECTURE
DISTRIBUTED

For nearly 50 years, these systems have been the industry standard for preemption systems.

In a distributed traffic signal preemption system, the vehicle communicates directly with the intersection. With this type of system, both vehicles and intersections need to have priority control equipment.

No existing communication infrastructure is required for this type of system, but you do have the option to manage and monitor the entire system from a central location if the intersections have fiber/Wi-Fi/cellular.

CENTRALIZED

As communities build out their communications infrastructure, cities can connect vehicles to infrastructure using Wi-Fi and cellular networks.

In a centralized traffic signal priority control system, the vehicle communicates directly with a centralized traffic management center. With this type of system, no preemption hardware is needed on the vehicle or at the intersection. A robust communication network is required and usually consists of a combination of cellular, Wi-Fi, Ethernet or Fiber Optic networking that connects vehicles and intersections to the traffic management center. The entire system is managed and monitored from a central location.

CENTRALIZED

In a Centralized traffic signal preemption system, the bus communicates directly with a Centralized Control Center. With this type of system, no preemption equipment is needed on the vehicle or at the intersection. A robust communication network is needed and usually consists of a combination of cellular, Wi-Fi, Ethernet or Fiber Optic networking that connects vehicles and intersections to the Centralized Control Center. The entire system is managed and monitored from a central location.

HYBRID

Certain deployments may require a blend of both centralized and distributed systems. A hybrid priority control solution provides the benefits of both systems as users migrate from one architecture to another.

The design of this system leverages the existing technologies that you have in place and pairs them with future technology. Each intersection or vehicle can use the type of system that best fits its intended use. For example, a fire department can operate on a legacy distributed infrared preemption system while transit vehicles pass through the same intersections using a centralized priority control solution.

The entire system or key parts can be managed and monitored from a central location.

Preemption System Comparisons
traffic signal priority control deployment considerations comparison
REAL-WORLD RESULTS

Centralized success

GTT worked with Greenman-Pedersen, Inc to model and deploy a centralized TSP solution that reduced travel times by up to 18 percent along one of the world’s busiest bus routes.

Click to view this archived presentation from Victor Darias and Mark Yedlin.

Case studies

With nearly 50 years experience deploying distributed transit and emergency vehicle priority control systems, Opticom is a proven solution for more than 3,100 cities worldwide.

Learn about some of these city’s success stories by reading a case study.

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