Traffic Management and Signals

As a Department, we are dedicated to maximizing the efficiency of our current transportation network.  To that end, we regularly evaluate and improve signal operations with new timing plans.  Those plans provide corridor coordination, focused on minimizing stops for the major direction flows during the morning and evening rush hours.  At the same time, we do the best we can to balance the delay to minor side-street traffic.  These plans are designed using the posted speed limit, which means excessive speeding and weaving through traffic will not get drivers very far ahead of the other commuters on the road.  Of course, accidents, inattentive drivers, and severe weather effect the timings of signal lights – so please remember to drive patiently and arrive alive.

As of May 2015, the City of Round Rock maintains and operates 79 traffic signals.  The City is responsible for every signal within the current City boundaries including signals on TxDOT roads such as the I-35 frontage roads, US 79, and RM 620.   We continually monitor and evaluate the ever-changing needs of our growing community; future traffic signals are evaluated individually.

Flashing Yellow Arrow Traffic Signals are a State requirement and will be installed as upgrades are made to existing signals and as new signals are installed.  Flashing Yellow Arrow Traffic Signals improve traffic flow and the safety of left turns.

Advanced Traffic Management System

The Traffic Management Center is a manned communications nexus for monitoring, servicing, and controlling all the traffic signals under the City’s responsibility.  Other features, possible in future system improvement, include a City-wide Gigabit Radio network that would have extra bandwidth for use by other City Departments, a web-based interface for public consumption of real-time video feeds at major intersections, continuous hourly/annual traffic counts at major intersections.

In 2013 the Transportation Department completed work on an Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) master plan study.  The resulting plan document outlines the communication, operations, and data collection improvements needed for the City to step into the 21st century of traffic management.

When taken together and combined with the power of the new central management software program, these tools will drastically increase the current staff’s effectiveness and delay the future needs for additional full-time employees.

Important Note: Video data is used in real-time only.  No recording is possible today and we have no plans to add that capability in the future.

Current Activities
Since February, 2014 the Traffic Operations division has implemented and/or partially implemented several of the steps in that plan.  The City has upgraded the wireless communication systems for traffic management, installed 46 battery-backup systems to keep signals running during a power outage, and placed 24 pan-tilt-zoom cameras for monitoring traffic during high congestion periods.  Each of these new tools plays an important role in the City’s growing traffic management system.

Matt Bushak, P.E.
3400 Sunrise Road
Round Rock, Texas 78665