With the installation of each new ‘Traffic Signal’, the possibility of synchronizing the signals becomes increasingly difficult; at some point, the number of traffic signals, and their ‘pressure sensing’ makes it impossible to synchronize.
Intelligent traffic systems!?!
The ‘Intelligence’ is embodied in (the brains of) ALL of the road users. The traffic signals serve to remove the need for people to be ‘think’ … the only ‘thinking’ involved is what has been encoded into the computer control.
This is very low-level Intelligence.
Any traffic signal that is wrongfully installed (that should not have been installed), calls into question how many other traffic signals have been wrongfully installed.
There are traffic signals that have been installed wrongfully, and they ought to be removed.
Do you know of any?
Probably. They’re all over the freakin’ place.
And where do a significant proportion (most?) traffic collisions (car-car; auto-pedestrian; auto-cyclist) occur? At traffic-signal controlled intersections!
Of course, this opens up a contentious political issue: if there is evidence supporting (or hard proof) that a traffic signal installation is inappropriate, and thus, ought to be removed … then, it immediately calls into question how many (and which) other traffic signals are inappropriate and requiring removal.
This is contentious precisely because many traffic signals were installed to please the local residents, who often demand the ’signals’ to make it easier to cross an arterial avenue or making a left turn.
Seems reasonable enough.However, what may be true for a single ‘thing’ (in this case, the traffic signal), isn’t necessarily true for a large-scale application of such ‘things’. It may be true that a traffic signal isn’t a problem, but when many signals are installed every year, a real problem develops.
Also, there are the unintended consequences: increase in pollution from the increased idling of many vehicles to allow passage of a few automobiles (or single car!); increased pollution from reaccelerating; increased noise; false sense of safety; vastly increased possibilities for collision (from discontinuous flow); etc.
We’re much better off with the fewest possible traffic signals.
If we’re to truly ‘optimize’ our road space/use, we need to maximize the flow of traffic. And this require that all road uses be mindful of what is going on … we need everyone to be thinking. That is truly ‘intelligent traffic systems’. Optimal traffic management, means that we all need to manage ourselves as best as we can.