NYSERDA and NYSDOT Fund City of White Plains Deployment of Adaptive Traffic Signal Control System on Tarrytown Road

Will improve traffic flow and reduce greenhouse gas emissions

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The City of White Plains deploys a new adaptive traffic signal control system on Tarrytown Road as a result of a $250,000 cost-shared research agreement from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT). The system is intended to improve traffic flow and reduce carbon dioxide emissions along one of the most congested corridors in the city.

The funding was made possible through the Low Carbon Transportation Alternatives Program Opportunity Notice, a partnership between NYSERDA and NYSDOT, to support programs and technology that provide pathways to energy efficiency, enhanced economics, sustainability and improved livability throughout the state of New York.

Tarrytown Road in White Plains is a major arterial that carries approximately 50,000 – 60,000 vehicles daily and serves as a primary route for commuter access to and from downtown White Plains. The roadway experiences traffic surges due to significant downtown retail activity including six major downtown malls / retail centers and events at the Westchester County Center. Tarrytown Road is also the primary route when traffic is diverted from I-287. The Tarrytown Road corridor experiences fluctuation in demand throughout the day with significant congestion during the morning and afternoon peak traffic hours.

“NYSERDA is pleased to be working with the New York State Department of Transportation and the City of White Plains in reducing traffic congestion which benefits not only the environment but the drivers and communities located in this heavily trafficked area,” said Francis J. Murray Jr., president and CEO of NYSERDA. “This project demonstrates how one technological change can allow a community to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fossil fuel consumption. We hope more communities across New York follow this example.”

Mayor Thomas Roach said, “The City of White Plains is pleased to have the opportunity to implement adaptive signal control technology on Tarrytown Road. It will ease traffic congestion in this heavily-trafficked corridor of the City, reduce vehicle emissions and improve air quality.”

The New York State Department of Transportation is proud to partner with NYSERDA and the City of White Plains on this important project. Reducing vehicle delay and greenhouse gas emissions using advanced technology without widening the roadway will benefit the people who work and live in the City of White Plains.

The adaptive traffic signal control system will collect real-time information and then adjust signal timing parameters on a cycle-by-cycle basis. It can speed throughput in the corridor and reduce congestion, subsequently reducing energy requirements and greenhouse gas emissions by reducing vehicle idle times.

Previous conventional traffic control techniques such as time-of-day signal timing and responsive timing plan selection were not able to accommodate all the variable and unpredictable traffic conditions experienced on the route. Adaptive signal control offers the capability of rapidly responding to changing traffic demands. Until recently, traffic signal control systems in New York State’s cities, towns and municipalities were either centrally based or closed loop systems that were not designed to rapidly respond to changing traffic demands.

The City of White Plains will utilize the Sydney Coordinated Adaptive Traffic System (SCATS) for this project, a proven adaptive traffic system with a long history of field deployment. SCATS is an advanced off-the-shelf software product that requires no software development, has been operational for over 30 years and currently controls more than 28,000 intersections worldwide. Although not previously installed in New York State, SCATS has been deployed in twelve cities across the United States by TransCore, a firm that has worked with the City of White Plains traffic management systems since 1991.

NYSERDA, a public benefit corporation, offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce their reliance on fossil fuels. NYSERDA professionals work to protect our environment and create clean-energy jobs. NYSERDA has been developing partnerships to advance innovative energy solutions in New York since 1975.