Traffic signal goes in at 29th and Colorado

       The new traffic signal at 29th Street and Colorado should be operational this week, according to City Traffic Engineering officials.

A city crew installs heads for the new intersection traffic signal at 29th Street and Colorado Avenue this week. The old fire station emergency light string (foreground) was also to be replaced.
Westside Pioneer photo

       Installation began in December.
       It will be the first time the intersection has had a full stoplight. Previously there was only the light to stop traffic when trucks from Fire Station 5 (at the northeast corner) needed to get onto or off of Colorado Avenue.
       In the new configuration, the station retains its light - moved to a new metal arm in place of the old string spanning the avenue - and has a “pre-empt” button to turn all lights red at the intersection so firefighters can drive their truck out safely in an emergency, explained Bob Gillespie of Traffic Engineering.
       Another change in the configuration is relocating the avenue's pedestrian crossing from the fire station light to the intersection. The intersection is being equipped with a special camera the city uses at intersections. It doesn't record images, but it sends information to the intersection's controller device to give green time to 29th Street vehicles when traffic comes up to it.
       The majority of the green time will be given to the avenue traffic, although the signal will be timed with the other stoplights along the avenue.
       Previously, with just the light in front of the station, motorists had sometimes been known to cut in front of the light off 29th to avoid having to wait for it. There were also potential conflicts with pedestrians in the crossing at the same place the trucks came out.
       People also sometimes didn't obey the light and they didn't seem to always know where to stop, firefighters have said.
       The project was funded in 2008 from a Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority signal-improvement program.

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