Late Merge Signage Work Zone Enhancements on I-70 Work Zone Lane Closure Issues Identified Lane Use Imbalance
Issues Identified Truck Operational Characteristics Issues Identified Reluctance to Yield
Late Merge Signage Encourages road-users to use both lanes to merge point Reduces driver conflict/road rage in the merge area Smoother merging operations lead to less stop and go traffic.
Accomplished with the help of additional signage Static Versus Dynamic Signing Static signing of Late merge: Uses temporary Signs that are put up and taken down with lane closure.
Dynamic signing of Late merge: Uses VMSs and traffic sensors to determine when the VMSs should display the late merge info. Region 1 chose to use Static signing for
I-70 west. Late Merge Signage Strategy implemented for the first time in Colorado Research and implementation performed in other states including
Minnesota, Maryland and Pennsylvania Some of the states are adapting dynamic signage Signs Used
Signs Used Signs Used Sample MHT Conceptual Results
Conceptually the late merge advantages are: Queue Lengths - Shorter by about 50% Shorter queue reduces the chance of backups extending beyond the Work Zone and reducing potential of rear end accidents.
Up to 15% Increased Throughput 75% fewer forced merges - During congestion 30% reduction in lane straddles Reduce driver anxiety
Both lanes can be used up to the merge point. Reduces The Frustration level of Drivers Drivers in the open lane are less likely to be irritated by others passing them in the closed lane. Signs make it more acceptable. Conceptual Results
Conceptually the late merge disadvantages: Driver understanding Drivers are not familiar with the late merge. There is a learning curve. Approach taper at high speeds and low volumes. when traffic demand is below the capacity of the open lane the traffic
speed is high and merge needs to happen earlier. It becomes more difficult for drivers to decide who has the right-of-way. Results Preliminary Observations Improved Lane Usage
Improved Travel Speeds Smoother Merge Maneuvers Reduced Queue Lengths Lessons Learned Provide Longer Merge Areas for Trucks Greater Compliance Observed When
Overhead VMS Signs Were Deployed Reinforce Use Both Lanes Message with Additional Signs For Better Results Compliance to Signs Increased with Exposure to Signs
Next Steps Perform Additional Data Collection/Validation Revise Sign Layout and Spacing to Enable Better Communication Document Results
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