New Technology Coming to Grand Traverse County Traffic Lights to Ease Congestion

Major projects are underway across Northern Michigan, all aimed at improving the area.

A new system for traffic lights will soon change way you get around here.

It’s a $3 million project, and one of the first of its kind in the area.

It’s called Adaptive Traffic Signal Control and it does just that, adapts to the traffic at that exact moment in order to ease the congestion, making traffic a lot more efficient.

Sitting through red lights and bumper to bumper traffic, something too familiar for drivers in Grand Traverse County.

“From Front Street light, to the bay, to Parkway, that light the traffic can be totally full all the way across,” says Dairy Lodge owner Stacy Popp.

But there could be a solution soon.

On U.S. 31 from South Airport to Grandview Parkway and M-72 from M-22 to Acme, 21 signals will be changed to use the new adaptive traffic signal control

“It’s all designed behind optimizing the movements of the intersection based on what traffic conditions are so it would know how much traffic is going through the intersection, how far the backups are at each intersection and time it accordingly,” says North Region operations engineer, Garrett Dawe.

A change not only drivers but also business owners are looking forward to.

“I think anytime traffic can move more efficiently it’s going to be good for business because obviously time is of the essence for a lot of people in their busy life,” Popp said.

“I think it’s brilliant. I mean it’s a high tech solution to an old problem so I think it’s a good idea,” says Traverse City resident Freddy Hunt.

Construction is scheduled to start in the fall of next year and these will be the first signals of their kind in Northern Michigan.