Gresham Smith to assist with ‘first of its kind’ traffic operations program involving Calera

By MICHELLE LOVE | Staff Writer

The Birmingham sector of the architecture firm Gresham Smith is one of three firms that has been selected by the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) to manage a new, statewide regional traffic operations program that will help “reduce congestion and make travel more consistent” through two key travel points throughout Alabama.

“Gresham Smith is proud to be selected by the Alabama Department of Transportation (ALDOT) to manage a new, innovative statewide Regional Traffic Operations Program,” said Hailey Cunningham, Gresham Smith’s communications coordinator. “A first-of-its-kind program, the goal is to improve traffic flow, safety and travel time reliability through active management strategies along major corridors in every corner of the state, including two major corridors in the Birmingham area.”

The two-year contract calls for the firm to actively manage, maintain and assist ALDOT with the operation of 112 traffic signals and their associated Intelligent Transportation Systems devices on two corridors in the Birmingham area: the U.S. 31 corridor from Calera to Birmingham (71 signals) and the U.S. 78 corridor from Graysville to Birmingham (41 signals).

The firm’s project team will draw from its Transportation Systems Management & Operations group to implement signal coordination, consistent signal timing methodology, real-time signal management and a pro-active response to maintenance issues.

“Historically, when our congested roadways reach capacity, we have widened them or made other capacity improvements,” said Blair Perry, P.E., Alabama state transportation leader at Gresham Smith. “ALDOT’s forward-thinking program will allow us to get a better return on our existing infrastructure investments by taking an active approach to corridor management. In other words, we’re putting technology to use to proactively improve the overall experience on state routes to improve peak travel times and safety for all users.”