SYNCHRONIZE STOPLIGHTS, REDUCE CONGESTION AND ROAD RAGE.
The interim city engineer in DeKalb is thinking right thoughts.
At a meeting Monday, the DeKalb City Council is scheduled to discuss a $1.3 million project to better coordinate traffic lights in the city to make driving in and around town more efficient. It also could cut down on pollution, with less fuel burned by drivers idling at red lights, said John Laskowski, DeKalb’s interim public works director and city engineer.Because in downtown DeKalb is a crossing of two state highways that is crossed by the two main tracks of The Overland Route, the state and Union Pacific will be involved. Yes, a slow train on that crossing is going to have downtown tied up, and the cycles might have to be modified once the train clears. But one way to keep downtown more pedestrian friendly is to time the traffic lights to 25 mph; a similar approach with the lights timed to 30 mph in the university area would cut down on the people jackrabbiting from one light to the next to get through.
“This project would get our traffic signals to communicate better and have them better timed for more efficiency,” Laskowski said.
And perhaps some of the signalled intersections might be converted to simple rotaries or equipped with the flashing yellow arrow for left turns, rather than the rigid "left on green arrow only" currently in use.