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Pedestrian Signal Head Warrant Project


The Traffic Operations and Management Standing Committee (TOMSC) of the Transportation Association of Canada (TAC) wanted to develop a national warrant for adding pedestrian signals to existing traffic signals or to determine whether pedestrian heads should be included for new signal installations. This paper discusses the development of that national warrant and consists of three components: (1) an environmental scan; (2) the warrant methodology process; and (3) updating the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices and Traffic Signal Warrant (TSW) user handbook. This environmental scan comprises two elements: (1) a comprehensive review of literature on existing international warrants practices and a review of policies, by-laws and municipal initiatives for pedestrian warrants; and (2) extensive jurisdictional survey on current pedestrian signal head warrant practices. The warrant methodology is based on a ‘cumulative factors method’ that results in a point score that takes into account pedestrian volumes, pedestrian-vehicle conflict, pedestrian demographics, signal operations, and crossing distance. Parameters used in the warrant calculation are based on the environmental scan, the traffic signal warrant, and recommendations from the project steering committee and the consulting team. The existing TSW handbook is updated to provide traffic operations practitioners with instructions on how to use the pedestrian signal head warrant matrix in a consistent and comprehensive way. The handbook identifies the input data required for the warrant analysis and describes how each of the warrant components is calculated. Important notes, additional information or warnings are also provided in support of specific considerations. 

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
Alfred A Guebert
Irini Akhnoukh
Road safety