Taken directly from page 88 of the report from the Oregon Strategy for
Greenhouse Gas Reductions
TRAN-12: Set up traffic flow engineering “Best Practices.”
Specific Recommended Actions:
• Improve signal timing by leveraging The Climate Trust, Federal Highway Administration and City of Portland initiatives.
• Enforce speed limits.
• Apply Intelligent Transportation System solutions.
• Identify, prioritize and reduce recurring traffic congestion and optimize highway speeds to the preferred range.
• Analyze potential projects using value pricing (i.e., congestion pricing).
Truck and auto travel is most energy efficient when vehicles travel in the 40 to 50 mph range without frequent stops and starts. Traffic flow can be optimized through targeted infrastructure investments, traffic signal re-timing, value pricing, and investments in alternatives to the automobile. Projects that improve traffic flow through road widening or traffic management strategies will reduce fuel use in the short-term if vehicles operate at more efficient speeds with less braking and accelerating. However, increasing or improving road capacity may attract more
drivers, thereby increasing vehicle miles traveled and eroding GHG benefits.
Intelligent transportation systems encompass a broad range of wireless and wireline communications-based information, control and electronics technologies. When integrated into the transportation system infrastructure and in vehicles themselves, these technologies help monitor and manage traffic flow, reduce congestion, provide alternate routes to travelers, enhance productivity, and save lives, time and money.