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Council Expected to Spend $1.8 Million on Bicycle-In-Traffic Detection System

Published on Monday, May 16, 2016 | 5:14 am

Pasadena’s Department of Public Works is now recommending approval by the City Council of a contract worth about $1.8 million for the installation of bicycle detection systems at various intersections in Pasadena.

Fittingly, the matter comes before the Pasadena City Council tonight, the first day of Bike week in Pasadena.

The project would consist of the installation of bicycle detection systems at signal controlled intersections on Washington Blvd. from Lincoln Avenue to Allen Avenue, Hill Avenue from California Blvd. to the North City Limit, Mountain Street from Lincoln Avenue to Altadena Drive, and Altadena Drive from Foothill Blvd. to the North City Limit.

With the bicycle detection systems tied into it, the city’s Traffic Management Center could identify “traffic congestion and enhanced traffic operations support for the bikeway corridors,” according to the Public Works agenda report.

“The installation of bicycle detection systems at these locations would provide adaptability to better handle varying demands,” the report said.

Traffic expert Steven G. Goodridge, member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, says a number of communities in the U.S., including Bakersfield, California, Santa Cruz, California and Santa Clara County, California, have adopted policies to design and adjust all traffic signal sensors to detect bicycles.”

“Demand-actuated traffic signals sense the presence of traffic before changing signal phases in order to optimize traffic flow,” Goodridge said. “Failure can cause substantial, indeterminate delay to road users and encourages non-compliance with the signal, which affects safety. Fortunately, good engineering of traffic signal sensors allows virtually all legal vehicle traffic, including bicycles, to be detected reliably using existing technology.”

The contract would be awarded to Baldwin-based Crosstown Electrical and Data, Inc. which the Public Works department determined to be the lowest responsive and responsible among four companies that bid for the project.

An Agenda Report for Monday’s City Council meeting said Crosstown submitted a bid to undertake the project at a cost of $ 1,587,983, plus $112,017 as contingency to provide for any necessary change orders.

Construction on the bicycle detection systems is expected to start in July and completed by February 2017.

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