Bus Signal Priority Based on GPS and Wireless Communications (Phase III) - Bus to Roadside Infrastructure Communications Framework for Intelligent Transit Applications

Principal Investigator(s):

Chen-Fu Liao, Former Researcher, Mechanical Engineering


  • Gary Davis, Professor, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering

Project summary:

Traditional presence detection systems, ideally designed for emergency vehicles, usually send a signal priority request without the consideration of bus readiness.

As part of the Urban Partnership Agreement, Metro Transit, Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), and the City of Minneapolis have implemented Transit Signal Priority (TSP) along Central Avenue from north Minneapolis (2nd Street SE) to south of I-694 (53rd Avenue NE) with a total of 27 intersections. Transit performance before and after the deployment of a TSP strategy was examined through the data analysis process to evaluate the effectiveness and benefit of a TSP strategy.

The objective of this study is to deploy and validate a wireless-based TSP strategy developed from earlier studies by considering bus schedule adherence, location, and speed. A TSP onboard system using an embedded computer was developed to interface with EMTRAC radio modules to bypass the EMTRAC TSP algorithm on current buses. Field experiments were performed by installing University of Minnesota TSP units on four RTE10 buses for two weeks. The EMTRAC algorithm was temporary disabled on the test vehicles. Link travel time and node dwell time on the TSP-equipped route segments are compared. The results indicated the University TSP algorithm gain additional 3-6% of travel time reduction as compared to other RTE10 buses operating during the two-week test period.


Project details: