940.6 Traffic Signal Spacing

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Appropriate signal spacing is needed to preserve efficient traffic flow and progression on urban arterial roadways; for instance, a quarter- or half-mile spacing allows traffic signals to be effectively interconnected and synchronized. Adequate spacing will also tend to reduce rear-end collisions and “stop and go” driving that increases congestion, delay and air pollution. In urban areas, these guidelines were developed to allow for smooth operations given a 90-second total traffic signal cycle length.


Minimum spacing between traffic signals on public roads
Minimum spacing between traffic signals on public roads


Table 940.6 Minimum Guidelines
Roadway Classification In Current and Projected Urban AreasIn Rural Areas
Major, Freeway Traffic signals not allowed Traffic signals not allowed
Major, Non-Freeway ½ mile (2,640 ft.) – 1 mile (5,280 ft.) See note below*
Minor ¼ mile (1,320 ft.) - ½ mile (2,640 ft.) See note below*
* Rural traffic signals are generally isolated signals rather than signals placed in a progression along a route. Signals are to be placed at least 5,280 ft. apart because of high rural operating speeds.
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