LA Metro Next Generation of Transit Signal Priority

DKS Associates led several tasks on this project to help Metro advance its region-wide bus signal priority (BSP) system to be more analytics-centered, rapidly deployable, and interoperable across jurisdictions. The team identified and evaluated emerging Connected Vehicle and cloud-enabled communications technologies relevant to the Agency’s signal priority needs and developed a next-generation BSP concept of operations and path forward for the Agency.

The Need

  • Over the past several years, declining bus ridership has been a consistent national trend. One major factor cited is increased travel time and worsening travel time reliability. Transit signal priority (TSP) is one of several solutions in the toolbox to improve travel times and make the travel times reliable. Existing TSP in LA uses detection equipment based on outdated 15-year-old technology. LA Metro is making significant investments in transit projects, and instead of purchasing 15-year-old technology, Metro needed to determine the next generation of technology for their new projects.

Our Solution

  • Existing TSP typically uses a short-range communications method for the bus to communicate to the intersection and request priority. This method relies heavily on equipment at the intersection and on the bus. The next generation of TSP will use Internet-based platforms to request priority through a central system.

The Outcome

  • The next-generation TSP concept and implementation strategy enable the agencies to:

    • More rapidly deploy TSP
    • Increase automated data collection and analytics reducing manual data analysis functions
    • Improve performance monitoring with better analytics

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