GovBytes: Midtown in Motion Helps Ease NYC Traffic Congestion

Most cities get clogged up with traffic during rush hour, but New York City is one of the worst as a multitude of cars, buses, and people converge at the end of the day. In order to combat congestion, the city has rolled out a real-time traffic monitoring system that allows workers to remotely adjust the timing of traffic lights, according to Government Technology. Residents will soon have access to the data on their mobile devices as well.

The system, called Midtown in Motion, helps city traffic engineers identify congested traffic points and readjust traffic signal patterns in real time to reduce traffic jams. The system uses 100 microwave sensors, 32 traffic video cameras and E-ZPass readers at 23 intersections to track traffic volumes, congestion and record vehicle travel times, according to a New York City press release.

Data is sent wirelessly through the New York City Wireless Network to the city’s Traffic Management Center in Long Island City where the traffic signals are adjusted remotely. The real-time information from the Midtown in Motion system will become available on mobile devices such as PDAs and smartphones.

New York City Launches Real-Time System to Reduce Traffic Congestion

Traffic congestion is on the rise in many major U.S. cities due to increasing population, lack of public transportation infrastructure, and a plain old unwillingness to get out of our cars. Scholars at the Brookings Institute argue that the most effectively way to curb congestion is to raise the price of driving through taxes and tolls. Do you think technology might be a solution to our traffic problem, or do we need to find alternative methods of transportation?


“GovBytes” is a blog series created by GovLoop in partnership with Government Technology. If you see great a story on Gov Tech and want to ask a question around it, please send it to [email protected].

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