Transportation Engineering Mission & Vision
Mission: The Traffic Engineering Division’s mission is working together to foster a thriving Alexandria by providing improved mobility in Alexandria and the region, through sound engineering, design, technology implementation, and regional cooperation.
Vision: The Traffic Engineering Division is a proactive and effective organization with a drive towards technological innovation.
- Transit signal priority allows vehicles, such as buses, to get through traffic signals quicker by communicating with the traffic signal to alert the signal that they are approaching. The signal will either stay green longer, or if it is red, shorten the red light. The goal is to keep buses on schedule, improve travel times, and make buses a more viable option for commuters. The animated video is here.
- Traffic Signal Viewer map that highlights various features of each of the City’s 260 signalized intersections. Interactive map is here.
- Pavement Sensors have been installed in three locations. These sensors alert the City when temperature drop below certain temperatures so we can proactively treat the roadway to prevent ice and freezing.
- Traffic Camera Live Feed is now available via broadcasting on the Traffic View website.
- The City has become a WAZE Connected Citizens Program Partner. By sharing publicly available information, the partnership enables WAZE to direct traffic around incidents and road closures and enables the City to respond more immediately to accidents and congestion on their roads. Waze aggregates the partners' data on their App platform, resulting in succinct and thorough overviews of current road conditions that can be used for more informed planning.
- The City has become a partner in Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination (MATOC) program. This program is a coordinated partnership between transportation agencies in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia that aims to improve safety and mobility in the region through information sharing, planning, and coordination. The MATOC program makes travel smoother and safer for the City of Alexandria by providing essential information on transportation operations in the National Capital Region.
Alexandria is committed to investment in transportation technologies that improve road safety and traffic management while also preparing the City to take advantage of future transportation infrastructure advancements, such as self-driving cars and real-time traffic management. The City's Smart Mobility initiatives are keeping City streets safe and running smoothly now, while also laying the groundwork for emerging technologies that will shape transportation over the next five, 10, 20 years and beyond.
Major projects include:
- Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Master Plan
- ITS Integration Projects
- Transit Signal Priority & Emergency Vehicle Preemption
- Adaptive Traffic Signal Control
- Travel Time & Speed Sensors
The Traffic Engineering Division operates the City’s Transportation Management Center (TMC). The Center uses technology to manage traffic and critical events such as snow removal, weather related operations and other special events.
Being Forward Thinking and innovative are guiding principles of the Smart Mobility Program. With emerging technology that changes constantly, the City aims to proactively assess new technology solutions to better manager traffic and advance City goals. The Traffic Engineering Division researches and evaluates cutting edge technology for implementation.
Speed cushions are traffic calming devices that use vertical deflection to slow motor-vehicle traffic in order to improve safety conditions. The use of vertical deflection devices is most commonly found where vehicle speeds are mandated to be low, usually 25 miles per hour.
Traffic congestion in Alexandria is one of the most common concerns of residents in the City. Due to the City's location outside of D.C. many people travel through our City to reach their destinations. The proliferation of navigation apps that directs through traffic onto local streets instead of on major highways has worsened the condition over the past few years. The Traffic Engineering Division, in partnership with Transportation Planning, is continually working to reduce the impacts of cut-through traffic while mitigating the impacts on local streets.
Traffic signals can improve safety for pedestrians, bicycles and motorists as well as provide orderly movement of traffic when designed and installed properly. Signals that are installed when no legitimate need exists can increase vehicle stops, traffic delays, fuel consumption, crashes and breed disrespect for other traffic signals. Installation of traffic signals is preceded by a thorough engineering study. The Traffic Signal Viewer provides a map of signal technology around the City.
To report an issue with a traffic signal, please type in "traffic signal" through the City's Alex311 Customer Service Portal.
The Traffic Engineering Division reviews requests for new traffic controls and makes recommendations for the installation of new or modified controls at intersections. Community requests for these changes are reviewed by staff and many must be recommended for approval by the Traffic and Parking Board.
Projects, Programs & Studies
The Traffic Engineering Division staffs the City's Traffic and Parking Board. All matters concerning traffic, parking and taxicabs are presented to the Traffic and Parking Board for consideration prior to action by the Director of the Transportation and Environmental Services Department or presentation to City Council. The Board investigates, studies and analyzes traffic and parking problems within the city, provides feedback to staff on plans, methods and means to control and relieve parking and traffic congestion, has jurisdiction over taxicabs, and renders advice and recommendations to the City Manager, the Planning Commission and City Council.