The long-ago traffic promise of the 1984 Olympics has finally been fulfilled: yesterday in Historic South-Central, Mayor Villaraigosa switched on the last Los Angeles traffic signals to get synchronized. The signal synchronization program originally began as part of the Olympics traffic plan but was never finished; Villaraigosa made it a priority when he began his tenure in 2005. The completion makes LA "the first major city in the world to synchronize all of its traffic signals," according to CBS LA. There are now 4,398 signals in the city's Automated Traffic Surveillance and Control System (which is super cool and sure to get a workout during the Oscars this weekend--the program can be manipulated to help law enforcement, ease flow during special events, or just help out in especially congested areas). The completed synchronization is supposed to increase travel speed by 16 percent and reduce travel times by 12 percent; it should also reduce carbon emissions by decreasing traffic idling. Villaraigosa, quoted in the Daily News, said this will "change a city known for traffic and smog into a city known for mobility and sustainability."
· LA In Sync: Traffic Signals To Cut Travel Times [CBS LA]
· Inside LA's Super Cool Traffic Light Control System [Curbed LA]