City Ave District to Ease Traffic & Create New Accessibility With Addition of Adaptive Signals & New Pedestrian Crossings

City Ave District to Ease Traffic & Create New Accessibility With Addition of Adaptive Signals & New Pedestrian Crossings


The City Avenue Special Services District (City Ave District) has been working on new ways to ease traffic in the area and create greater accessibility for pedestrians. One of the ways is the installation of traffic adaptive signals in the corridor. The first phase of the project begins this week on St. Asaph’s Road in Bala Cynwyd, a key parallel route to City Avenue, with expected completion in March 2015. These signals will also be added on City Avenue, with work on that portion expected to begin in the spring. There will be very limited impact to traffic during this process, with any work done in travel lanes completed during non-peak hours.


Traffic adaptive signals use technology to adapt the timing of green lights to accommodate changing traffic patterns and ease traffic congestion. Conventional signal systems use pre-programmed timing schedules which often contribute to traffic congestion and delay. The adaptive signal equipment will use video cameras and a newly-installed wireless system to monitor the volume of vehicles on each approach of every intersection in real-time, and will adjust the signal timing on a cycle-by-cycle basis to minimize the overall delay to traffic at the intersection, maintain progression along the roadway, and provide timing for safe pedestrian crossings.

In addition to the new signal technology, the intersection of St. Asaph’s Road and Monument Road/Presidential Boulevard will be upgraded to include new ADA compliant pedestrian ramps, pedestrian push buttons, and pedestrian signals. City Ave will receive an additional upgrade of pedestrian push buttons as well.


Commented Terrence Foley, President & CEO of the City Ave District, “The installation of these new adaptive signals is just one way we are working to ease traffic and congestion in our District, while also creating safer pedestrian crossings. Our overall goal is to make the City Ave District an even more accessible destination for those living, working, or exploring here.”


Studies on the impact of adaptive signals have demonstrated a reduction in peak hour delays anywhere from 10 to 30 percent.


This project was initiated by the City Ave District with support from a $250,000 ARLE (Automated Red Light Enforcement) grant from PennDOT.  Additional funding was received from Lower Merion Township to upgrade the ADA pedestrian ramps at the intersection of St. Asaph’s Road and Monument Road. Improvement to traffic flow along St. Asaph’s Road was identified as part of a joint study effort between City Ave District and Lower Merion Township, which focused on revitalization of the City Avenue Corridor. The adaptive traffic signal equipment will be installed at five intersections along St. Asaph’s Road.


About the City Ave District
The City Ave District works with businesses, property owners, developers, and residents to shape the future of this important corridor. This is a unique partnership between the City of Philadelphia and the Township of Lower Merion. Spanning across Philadelphia and Lower Merion Townships in Montgomery County, the District is the first multi-jurisdictional special services or business improvement district in North America.