Case Study: Using Traffic Video to Determine Access Management Needs
Tony Tramel is a traffic engineer, consultant, and former director of the Department of Traffic and Transportation in the Lafayette (Louisiana) Consolidated Government. He has more than 40 years of experience under his belt and has some wild traffic engineering stories to tell. In recent years, Tony has used CountingCars’ equipment to conduct some of his studies and those pieces of equipment have helped him gather more complete, and more accurate, traffic data.
Tony was recently hired by the Louisiana DOT to conduct a trip generation and access study of a section of highway where three access points were needed – two access points for two new large, multi-home subdivisions located on one side of the highway, and the third access point for a single-family, residential subdivision for six homes located on the opposite side of the highway. He was asked to determine the anticipated traffic volumes at each of the proposed access connections.
The LA DOT already planned to build a left-turn lane on the highway to access the subdivisions, but was also contemplating whether to add a left-turn lane to access the private driveway. Tony was hired to assess whether or not the left-turn lane into the private driveway was necessary, given the cost to create it could be as much as $400k.
Using a COUNTcam, Tony collected four consecutive days of 24-hour video increments to complete his study. During the first data collection, the COUNTcam was knocked down by the bucket of a utility truck, which he caught on camera. His second try was successful and Tony was able to count the traffic video from his office using the COUNTpad. He discovered that only one car turned into the private driveway during peak traffic hours. This data, and the video he could provide to the LA DOT, was used in his recommendation of not building the second left-turn lane.
At this time, LA DOT is still reviewing Tony’s recommendations. Regardless of the decision made, the video data Tony collected will assist the DOT in making a decision that is financially sound and will keep traffic moving.