The software controlling Launceston’s traffic signals is some of the oldest in the country.
This hinders the ability to successfully coordinate the operation of the overall traffic signal system, City of Launceston’s director of infrastructure services Shane Eberhardt said.
It also means the capability to change how the signals operate individually is very limited.
“The traffic signals in Launceston are owned and operated by the Department of State Growth, but the City of Launceston is quite cognisant of the fact that better performing traffic signals will make a significant difference to how our transport network as a whole operates,” Mr Eberhardt said.
“With that in mind, we are collaborating with the Department of State Growth to upgrade Launceston's traffic signals in a $3 million, three-year program, which is due to commence in the 2018-19 financial year.”
Mr Eberhardt described the upgrades as a “quantum leap forward” and said it would provide the mechanisms to bring the city’s traffic signals into the 21st century.
“Smarter traffic management software will bring with it marked differences in how the overall system communicates with itself and allow us to make changes to the traffic light system on a needs basis,” he said.
“For example, when there is an AFL match at University of Tasmania Stadium, we will be able to manage traffic flow in a much smarter way by prioritising the major routes out of the city and away from the stadium and greatly reduce traffic congestion at peak times.”
Road infrastructure is also being planned ahead of the University of Tasmania’s relocation to better manage traffic flows through Invermay.
The council is considering adding traffic signals to the Invermay Road intersection with Lindsay Street off Victoria Street Bridge.
The most recent data from 2009 showed an average of 19,320 vehicles cross the bridge each day.
“Traffic volumes have since increased to the point where the existing piece of infrastructure doesn't have the capacity for the increase in traffic and it doesn't support easy crossing for pedestrians,” Mr Eberhardt said.
“The council is consider signalising this intersection in 2018-19, which we believe will be a marked improvement on what currently exists for both traffic and pedestrians.”
There is also plans to increase turning movements from Goderich Street into Forster Street. The council, in conjunction with State Growth, is investigating widening the intersection to accommodate an extra lane.