Dubai’s RTA launches second phase of Smart Pedestrian Signals project

Posted: 11 April 2023 | | No comments yet

In line with RTA’s commitment to improve traffic safety, the second phase of Dubai’s Smart Pedestrian Signals project will continue utilising IoT technology to detect pedestrian movement and reduce accidents across 10 new locations.

RTA second phase Smart Pedestrian

Credit: Roads and Transport Authority

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has announced that it has commenced the second phase of its Smart Pedestrian Signals project expansion in the emirate, incorporating 10 new sites, which will increase the total number of locations of the Smart Pedestrian Signal locations to 28 by 2024.

The launch of this phase follows the successful outcome of the first phase, which had involved the installation of smart pedestrian signals at various key locations throughout Dubai. The project’s expansion demonstrates RTA’s commitment to utilising smart technologies and the Internet of Things (IoT) to ensure seamless traffic management and enhance the safety of both pedestrians and motorists. 

The Smart Pedestrian Signals technology is operated by a system that is reliant on sensors that are connected to a ground optical system that is synchronised with the signal’s light operation. It perceives the pedestrian movement on the pavement before they cross the street and on the pedestrian crossing while they cross. This significantly enhances pedestrian safety, as well as boosts the efficiency of traffic light operations and ensures better management of signal timing.

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“The system proved effective in improving pedestrian safety in cases involving those who require more time to cross, like elderly residents, people of determination and individuals with luggage or pushchairs. Results showed that no pedestrian accidents occurred since the introduction of smart pedestrian signals, which confirms the effectiveness of the project in raising traffic safety at intersections. It also improved the vehicle flow by eliminating the pedestrian mode in cases where no pedestrians detected, thus offering  more time to motorists,” said Mohammed Al Ali, Director of Intelligent Traffic Management Department, Traffic and Roads Agency, RTA.

The selection of sites for installing the smart pedestrian signals is guided by criteria that has been set in co-ordination with strategic partners, the proximity of pedestrian crossings to each other, the rate of pedestrian incidents at the signal, the street classification (speed limit, number of lanes in each direction), locations and distance to footbridges, as well as the road design.