The city of Fairborn is nearing completion of the Central Avenue signals project, which cost about $235,000 and will improve traffic flow along that corridor, city officials said.
New wireless equipment is being installed at five intersections on Central Avenue — Dayton, Main, Xenia, Hebble and Broad — and the project is expected to be finished in the next month, city engineer Jim Sawyer said.
It will take another two to three months to fine-tune everything, he said.
The average daily traffic count along that nearly mile-long stretch of Central Avenue is 6,500.
“It should improve safety, No. 1,” Sawyer said. “And it should improve the flow of traffic through there and reduce delays. All the signals will be talking to each other and know what traffic is coming its way. That improves the efficiency of the flow of traffic through that area.”
The total cost of the project is $235,000, with $156,000 coming from an Ohio Department of Transportation grant. The remaining balance will come out of the city’s capital improvement fund and county motor vehicle license tax fund.
The funds were used to buy and install new infrastructure, including signal heads, pedestrian crossing signals and buttons, battery back-up units and traffic detection video cameras.
City officials said they have received emails and phone calls from citizens asking if the cameras are red light or speed detectors. Sawyer said the cameras’ purpose is to monitor vehicles through the intersection and adjust the timing of red lights according to the traffic.
“A new system goes up that’s very similar (to red light cameras), I can see the confusion,” City Manager Deborah McDonnell said. “But we’re not doing that. We won’t ever rule it out. But my personal opinion is that those cameras should be used in places where there are a high number of incidents and should not be marketed for a city to earn revenue.”
Sawyer also said the $1.4 million Broad Street signal interconnect project will begin next spring, which will upgrade six intersections from Highview Drive to Dayton Drive. About $900,000 of the project will be paid for by a federal grant.