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A followup to our most recent item about citizens complaining to the city regarding backups at the Admiral/California intersection – Tim e-mailed SDOT and got this reply from engineer Chris Faulkner – same person whose responses were shared by commenters – indicating they’ve figured out the problem:
I stand behind my timing and believe that it is working well. Unfortunately, because of malfunctions, my timing has not always been running and the signal has been working erratically. Every time that I had been out to observe it everything was worked well, within the past 3 weeks I have spent three PM Peaks and two AM Peaks at this intersection, verifying that everything is working. On my last trip the signal began skipping phases and traffic backed up very badly, like the complaints that I have been receiving. Because I was at the intersection to observe it, I was finally able to diagnose the problem and we are working on a solution.
Currently, we believe the problem was an underlying problem with the electronics and when we installed the new timing it exasperated the problem. Since last Wednesday, the intersection has been placed in a different mode, kind of like a windows safe mode. In this mode the intersection cannot skip phases, but it also cannot run coordinated timing. The consequence of this mode was that the intersection is working tolerable well during off peaks, but horrible during AM and PM Peak times. I apologize for this and want you to know that we are doing everything that we can to correct these problems. We plan on changing out some of the electronics later today in an attempt to address the problem and hope to put it back into my timing after that and observe it over the next few days to see if we have corrected the malfunctioning equipment.
Admiral/California drivers, let us know if things do get better!