Deployment of special event signal timing plans has reduced queuing onto travel lanes of I-75 before events and reduced time for traffic to disperse after events to 90 minutes from 3 to 4 hours.

Experience with Special event signal timing plans in Gainesville, Florida.

Gainesville; Florida; United States

Summary Information

This synthesis documents the state of the practice associated with designing, implementing, and operating active traffic management (ATM) on arterials. Information for this synthesis was gathered through a literature review of advanced ATM methods for arterials and in-depth telephone interviews of agencies selected through a screening interview. The study has provided information on strategies used to actively manage traffic and congestion on arterials; situations and operating conditions in which ATM strategies have been successfully and unsuccessfully deployed on arterials; and system and technology requirements associated with implementing the strategies.

The city of Gainesville, Florida, where the University of Florida is located, has special signal timing plans for special events. In order for these plans to work, all traffic controllers in the city must be connected to the central server. Football games pose a particular traffic challenge. Inbound football signal timing plans intend to keep traffic attempting to exit I-75 from queuing into travel lanes and outbound football signal timing plans intend to move traffic to I-75 and away from the stadium area as quickly as possible.

  • Since implementation the spillback onto I-75 is greatly reduced and traffic takes about 90 minutes to disperse after football games rather than three to four hours.
  • It has reduced police overtime costs, improved safety, and reduced driver frustration.

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NCHRP Synthesis 447: Active Traffic Management for Arterials

Author: Dowling, Richard G. and Aaron Elias

Published By: Transportation Research Board

Source Date: 2013



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Typical Deployment Locations

Metropolitan Areas


planned special events, arterial management, special events, signal timing, traffic control

Benefit ID: 2016-01059