Posted on: December 27, 2016

Traffic Signal Upgrade at Kenosha/9th Street Intersection

Intersection of Kenosha and 9th Street

New flashing yellow arrow, left turn traffic signals will be installed at the intersection of Kenosha Street (71st) and 9th Street (Lynn Lane) on Friday, December 30. Drivers will encounter a four-way stop at the intersection while crews perform the work, from approximately 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The new traffic lights allow for both protected and permissive left turns from dedicated left turn lanes and will help alleviate traffic congestion. The new left turn traffic signal head includes the standard red, yellow and green arrows which have been used for years, along with an additional “flashing yellow arrow.” The “flashing yellow arrow” indicates to drivers that they can make a permissive left turn, if there is no oncoming traffic or pedestrians.

“The new traffic signals will give drivers more opportunities to turn in dedicated left turn lanes,” said Steve Arant, Streets and Stormwater Director. “Instead of sitting at a red light when there’s no oncoming traffic, the new signal allows drivers to make a permissive left turn and reach their destination without unnecessary delays.”

The new type of signal has been in operation at the intersections of Tucson Street and Aspen Avenue and Tucson Street and Redbud Avenue since late 2014.

The new left turn traffic signal head includes the standard Red, Yellow and Green arrows which have been used for years, along with an additional “flashing yellow arrow”.

If the signal is a...

Red Arrow
Stop. Left turn is not permitted.
Green Arrow
Safe to turn left. Oncoming traffic must stop.
Flashing Yellow Arrow
Left turn is permitted, but driver must yield to oncoming traffic or pedestrians.
Steady Yellow Arrow
Driver must prepare to stop as arrow is about to turn red.

Watch the video below to see how it works.

The National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) studied the flashing yellow arrow configuration and compared it to various protective/permissive left turn (PPLT) control devices and signal arrangements. The study determined that a flashing yellow arrow PPLT display was consistently found to be equal to or superior to existing PPLT displays, both in a laboratory environment and field experiments in cities. This configuration is now adopted in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD).

The new standard for protected left turn signals was included in the 2009 edition of the MUTCD, which the state adopted in 2012. The flashing yellow arrow gives left turning traffic more opportunities to pass through an intersection than its predecessor, which was the solid steady green “ball” signal.

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