Traffic flow. How many lanes are needed on a road? Should there be a bicycle lane? What about sidewalk space? These are just some of the questions for traffic engineering, where every situation requires a different solution to ensure traffic flow. Ultimately, however, decisions are made based on the balance between capacity and speed. Traffic engineering is a key element within municipalities to ensure infrastructures run safely and efficiently.
- Traffic signal optimization
- Complex scenario management
- Maintaining of multiple projects simultaneously
- Monitoring of urban mobility systems
- Integration with other traffic tools
Traffic operations engineers work for cities, counties, MPOs, departments/ministries of transportation and highway administrations. Software helps them with:
- Signal timing
- Roadway improvements
- Overseeing safety components
The work of many traffic operations engineers is often challenging. They are faced with an overwhelming number of signals and improvements to make, alongside frequent queries and complaints from citizens affected by infrastructure changes. Therefore, software tools can help them optimize their network and tasks.
Even when a road system is well-designed, gridlock will occur if traffic signals are not properly timed. Traffic operations engineers must consider large amounts of detailed data regarding traffic volume and speed, as well as more subjective information, such as driving styles, to create signal timing that will allow smooth flow.
The one constant in every city is change. As land development continues, the impact on traffic must be analyzed for the infrastructure to run efficiently. Before any construction project begins, a review of permits and traffic studies must take place.
Many government entities outsource infrastructure design and development to consulting firms. This requires government traffic operations engineers to review the work, ensuring that all requirements and safety standards are met before proceeding with the project.