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More flashing yellow arrow signals are coming to Auburn

A national study demonstrated that drivers found flashing yellow left-turn arrows more understandable than the traditional solid green ball displays. - Courtesy photo
A national study demonstrated that drivers found flashing yellow left-turn arrows more understandable than the traditional solid green ball displays.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

For the Reporter

Beginning in April, the City of Auburn will be converting several traffic signals to flashing yellow arrows for left-turn movements. The project is expected to be completed in June.

The total estimated project cost is $482,000 and is funded by a Federal grant for citywide traffic signal safety improvement projects.

The improvements will include flashing yellow arrow left-turn operations, auxiliary signal heads, vehicle detection systems, signal head backplates with yellow reflective tape and new LED signal head lamps.

Over the next several weeks the City's contractor will be working mainly in the downtown area to complete these improvements at the following locations:

• Auburn Way North/4th Street NE
• Auburn Way N/1st Street NE
• Auburn Way N/East Main Street
• Auburn Way South/2nd Street SE
• Auburn Way South/4th Street SE
• Auburn Ave. NE/1st Street NE
• A Street SE/2nd Street SE
• A Street SE/3rd Street SE
• A Street SE/6th Street SE
• A Street SE/17th Street SE
• A Street SE/29th Street SE
• C Street SW/8th Street SW
• C Street SW/15 Street SW

Additional details can be found at this on the City's Capital Projects page.

Using the flashing arrows improves intersections by:

• Allowing more flexibility – The new flashing yellow display provides traffic engineers with more options to handle variable traffic volumes. The flashing yellow display promotes safe traffic flow during heavy traffic volumes while reducing traffic delay when traffic volumes are light.

• Lowering wait time – Drivers will have more opportunities to make a left turn with the flashing yellow left-turn arrow than with the traditional three-arrow signal display, which keeps drivers moving.

• Increasing safety – A national study demonstrated that drivers found flashing yellow left-turn arrows more understandable than the traditional solid green ball displays.

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