Connected Signals, Inc. has launched its Signal Priority System (SPS) product suite. The company, a leading provider of predictive real-time traffic signal information, has developed a proprietary vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology that is a cloud-based, centralized system connecting vehicles to traffic signals, and providing prioritization of buses, pedestrians, EMS vehicles, and others.
SPS supports Transit Signal Priority (TSP), automatic Pedestrian Signaling (PedSig), and a variety of other applications without requiring the acquisition and installation of additional capital infrastructure, including roadside equipment such as special-purpose optical or radio-frequency devices or DSRC installations.
TSP can be provided using a combination of a background application running on cellular-connected mobile devices, applications running on servers in the cloud, and capabilities provided by the systems already running on existing controllers deployed in the city.
A pedestrian running the PedSig app can enter a destination and begin to walk along the provided route. When the pedestrian approaches a pedestrian signal along the route, a request is sent to the cloud-based server indicating the crossing(s) that are desired. If the signal will be in the “Don’t Walk” state when they arrive, the server forwards a pedestrian call request to the appropriate controller, which treats it the same as a crosswalk button push. If the pedestrian has to cross in both directions, the system is capable of determining which order of crossings would be most efficient given predicted signal behavior and responding accordingly.
This makes deployment significantly easier and more cost-efficient for cities, provides flexibility to the existing traffic network, and supports expansion to future applications such as HOV preference and autonomous vehicle programs.
SPS also provides dramatic time savings for cities and can be deployed city-wide or fleet-wide in a matter of weeks, as opposed to years with traditional solutions.
SPS lets municipalities rapidly and affordably provide a wide range of signal priority applications, ranging from transit priority to EMS preemption. There is no need for infrastructure modifications that are prohibitively expensive to install and maintain, that take years to deploy, and that may be obsolete before deployment is complete.
Being cloud-based also makes SPS future-proof—new features and improvements can be delivered by software update rather than through expensive hardware maintenance at each intersection. These include but are certainly not limited to:
Letting cyclists automatically make a “vehicle” call approaching a signal without having to push a button or “dance” around the loop detector, and receive an acknowledgement that the signal knows they’re there;
Prioritizing cyclists (at an appropriate priority relative to transit and other vehicles);
Providing “virtual” loop detectors at intersections between major roads and minor side streets to make the signals more responsive when cross traffic arrives;
Providing priority to highly occupied or electric vehicles (popup HOVE lane); and
Providing EMS preemption.
SPS can also work alongside existing or planned deployments to offer immediate service and coverage extensions as needed.
The need for smarter, safer, and more efficient traffic systems drive our efforts to create flexible and innovative V2I solutions like SPS. Our goal is to reduce 12.5% of the 1.7 trillion pounds of carbon attributable to urban transportation. Technology like our Signal Priority System can achieve this goal, can work everywhere and be customized for specific situations, and it can also ease the frustrations of all commuters dealing with traffic congestion—whether using mass transit or driving, walking or cycling.—Matt Ginsberg, CEO and co-founder of Connected Signals
Connected Signals’ SPS is software-extensible, so private and public vehicles running the application (such as EMS vehicles and snowplows) can be given enhanced priority to help municipalities maximize throughput in ways that are currently impossible.
SPS can also provide vehicle operators with speed recommendations and other information to directly manage traffic flow. Cities can use Connected Signals’ SPS technology for general traffic management applications or to target specific objectives. These objectives include diminishing transit vehicle delays, optimizing traffic flow, and reducing carbon emissions. The technology can also be deployed to assist pedestrians and cyclists.