Fredericton buys bike-sensing traffic signal

Fredericton is investing $15,000 in a pilot project to see if a new type of traffic signal will reduce the amount of time cyclists are forced to wait at intersections.

Fredericton is investing $15,000 in a pilot project to see if a new type of traffic signal will reduce the amount of time cyclists are forced to wait at intersections.

Cyclists using Fredericton's bike lanes are often stuck waiting at red lights because bikes don't trigger traffic lights.

Coun. Bruce Grandy, the chairman of the city's transportation committee, said the unit will be on a pole and aimed along the bike lane.

"It detects your motion, much like a radar detector on a car when you're speeding or anything else," Grandy said.

"It detects when someone rides in on their bicycles and starts the activation of the timing of the lights."

Grandy said the initial $15,000 system will be installed at the intersection of Montgomery and York streets.

If the pilot project proves successful, the specialized traffic signals could be set up at other intersections next year. Similar traffic signals have been used in municipalities in Nova Scotia and Ontario.

Fredericton council awarded a contract to Fortran Traffic Systems for the Wavetronic 2 Approach Matrix digital radar detection system.

The contract is worth $14,649, plus HST. It is expected to take one day to install the new unit.