Effect of arterial signalization and level of service on measured vehicle emissions


ENERGY, AIR QUALITY, AND FUELS 2003, no.1842, pp.47-56, 2003 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2003
  • Doi Number: 10.3141/1842-06
  • Journal Name: ENERGY, AIR QUALITY, AND FUELS 2003
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.47-56
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: No


The effect of arterial traffic signal timing and coordination on vehicle emissions is studied. Traffic signal timing improvement is one of the most common practices for congestion management in the United States. Although the benefits of improved signal timing for reduced fuel consumption are well documented, its effectiveness as a transportation control measure for emissions has not been clearly investigated. An empirical approach based on real-world, on-road vehicle emissions measurements was used. A total of 824 one-way runs representing 100 h and 2,020 vehicle miles of travel were conducted involving four drivers and eight gasoline-fueled light-duty vehicles on two signalized arterials in Cary, North Carolina: Walnut Street and Chapel Hill Road. Modal analyses of the data indicate that emissions rates were highest during acceleration and tend to decrease (in descending order) for cruise, deceleration, and idle. A modal approach is used to quantify the effect of arterial traffic signal timing and coordination on emissions. A key result is that signal coordination on Walnut Street yielded measurable improvements in arterial level of service and emissions reduction. For Chapel Hill Road, emissions were substantially lower under uncongested. conditions [ level of service (LOS) A/B] than under congested conditions (LOS D/E) for travel in the same direction at different times of day. Findings confirm the utility of signal coordination and congestion management as effective tools for controlling emissions.