Traffic lights will be a topic of discussion during Monday evening’s City Council meeting, where staff will be asked to consider the feasibility of disabling advanced green lights at all (or most) of the intersections in the city from 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. the following morning.
“Many traffic signals in Sault Ste. Marie have advanced signals for the better movement of traffic during peak traffic hours; and many drivers have experienced the situation where no other vehicles are at the intersection and the advanced traffic signal is illuminated,” a motion in the agenda states.”During off-peak traffic hours, advanced traffic signals serve only to delay vehicles for a longer period of time at intersections. Delaying vehicles at intersections when such a delay is unwarranted adds to carbon emissions.”
Another traffic related topic being brought to the table during the meeting is traffic signal intersection changes, asking that Public Works and Engineering Services be requested to amend the current policy for major capital works to provide that when unwarranted traffic signals are removed from an intersection, the stop signs that are installed at the intersection shall have flashing red lights above them for a period of not less than one year.
Currently, Sault Ste. Marie’s policy during capital road works projects is to remove unwarranted traffic signals during the reconstruction, which “leads to an adjustment period for motorists who frequently travel the area to familiarize themselves with the new traffic control pattern,” states a motion in the agenda.
“When traffic signals are removed that control all four corners of an intersection, they are typically replaced by a stop sign that only controls traffic at two of the four corners of an intersection,” the motion continues, “It is not currently Sault Ste. Marie’s policy to include a flashing red ligh tabove the traffic signal as a default at the time of the change from a traffic signal-controlled intersection to a stop sign-controlled intersection.
“A flashing red light above a stop sign could be an effective way to assist motorists who frequently travel an area where there has been a change in the traffic control pattern to familiarize themselves with the new traffic control pattern.”