This project was supported with financial support from the National Institute of Transportation and Communities under grant number 1027. We are grateful to the City of Eugene Transportation Office, and Matt Rodrigues, Mike Firchland and Andrew Kading in particular. Two graduate students took on projects related to the grant: a big thanks to Brian Williams and Ben Bennett. We also thank Professor Schlossberg for his valuable insight.
This project demonstrates how an inexpensive system (hardware and software) can add new functionality to existing signal controllers, giving bicyclists an efficient way to cross a controlled intersection. The system integrates three components: (1) a Bike Connect box that resides near the signal-controller and is connected to it, (2) an application that runs on a Bike Connect device (currently an iPhone) and requests a green light at the correct approach-distance, and (3) a cloud-based publish/subscribe (pub/sub) component that handles cellular-communication between phone app and box. One stumbling block for the project was a means to obtain reliable GPS data to compute distance while walking, biking and standing still (being idle). We report on our evaluation of 4 methods: raw GPS, averaged GPS, line of best fit and speed. We found that a combination of methods was most effective and describe that combination and its results. The final system was put into place and tested with 120 separate rides. We report on our results and potential future paths to take the research.
Fickas, Stephen. Vehicle to Infrastructure: Letting Cyclists Talk to Signals. Project Brief NITC-ED-1027. Portland, OR: Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC), 2019.