The next phase of testing on the 42 dynamic messaging signs lining potions of Interstate 15 and U.S. Highway 95 is set to kick off this week.
Beginning Tuesday, Active Traffic Management sign testing will begin for signage along I-15 north and southbound between Russell Road and Washington Avenue as well as along U.S. 95 between Valley View and Las Vegas boulevards, the Nevada Department of Transportation announced last week. The signs were installed as part of the $1 billion Project Neon that finished in the summer.
This phase is expected to stretch into March and includes testing enforceable speed limits posted on the right side with High Occupancy Vehicles (HOV) signage on the left and lane control arrows, which can be changed in real time to alert motorists to a lane closure or crash ahead.
“The full-color Active Traffic Management signs will provide next-generation, real-time driver information about detours, crashes, speed limit changes, and lane restrictions, thereby improving safety and traffic flows by reducing differential travel speeds and secondary crashes for enhanced operational efficiency,” said Tony Illia, transportation department spokesman.
The signs were supposed to be fully operational in December but were delayed until March, due to bad fiber network patches, according to Illia.
New features during this testing phase include:
— Variable speed limits, which can be lowered based on traffic flow or a crash in in the area. These limits override the typical speed limit and are enforceable.
— HOV signs can be changed to open the lanes to general traffic to ease congestion. This feature will help traffic flow around a crash or work zone. In such cases, an “Open to All” message will be posted on the sign.
—Lane control arrows and X’s (located across the top of the sign structure). Lane control signs will be activated when there is a crash or road work activity; otherwise, they will remain dark.
Four different icons will be used to assist with lane control as described below:
—A yellow X with the word “Caution” will be posted if motorists need to proceed with caution.
—A yellow X with the word “Merge” will be posted when motorists need to prepare to merge due to a lane closing.
—A red X and the word “Closed” will be posted if a lane is closed to traffic,
—A green arrow with the word “Open” above all lanes will be displayed once the motorist is beyond the crash or work zone and the lanes are reopened.