Flashing Yellow Arrow in Palm Beach County
In November 2019, Palm Beach County activated the first phase of the Flashing Yellow Arrow (FYA) left turn traffic signals at 8 traffic signalized intersections along and in the vicinity of Congress Avenue between Golf Rd. and Gateway Blvd. Although the FYA traffic signal has been used nationwide for over 10 years, including in over 100 locations in Florida, the FYA traffic signal is new to Palm Beach County.
The FYA signal indication will replace the traditional solid circular green indication for the following two left-turn signal types:
- "Permissive Only" where only a solid circular green indication is displayed and motorists must always yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians before completing the left turn; and,
- "Protected/Permissive" which is comprised of two parts, a "protected" left-turn phase initiated by a green arrow signal indication where oncoming traffic must stop and it is safe to turn left, followed by a "permissive" part during which a solid circular green signal is displayed and left turning traffic must yield to oncoming traffic.
During the FYA display, left turning drivers must yield to oncoming traffic and / or pedestrians in the crosswalk.
For more information on the FYA, please see the below links and document:
Pilot Temporary Single-Lane Roundabout Deployment at the Intersection of Okeechobee Blvd & Jog Rd
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) in cooperation with Palm Beach County deployed a temporary single-lane roundabout using traffic cones and signing at the intersection of Okeechobee Blvd and Jog Rd for about 3 hours on Saturday, May 30 to test this temporary traffic control concept to be used at major intersections where signals are damaged after a hurricane and cannot be repaired for several days. The intersection was converted to a single-lane roundabout with a free-flow right turn lane on each approach. The signals were turned off at the end when the center circular island was set up.
The entire deployment was complete smoothly without any incident within one hour by 7:00 AM. Passenger vehicles, Palm Tran buses, very large semi-trailer trucks, pedestrians, and bicyclists were observed going through this single-lane roundabout for 3 hours. It took only 5-10 minutes to take down the entire set up and restore the intersection with full signal operation starting at 10:00 AM, in a very smooth, efficient, and safe manner. The relatively long queues, mostly on the west approach, completely dissipated in less than 5 minutes at the end of the test. The test setup was funded by FDOT. The county recorded more than 3 hours of video utilizing 2 drones and a dashboard-mounted GoPro camera and took numerous pictures.
The exercise validated the concept and achieved its goals by verifying the amount of time and level of effort it takes to setup and take down as well as identifying few adjustments that could improve the efficiency of the operation. Traffic went through the roundabout in an orderly and safe manner. The FDOT and County staff were very pleased with the outcome and want to discuss the next steps in order to incorporate this tool to the FDOT and County hurricane emergency response and recovery plans. The FDOT will be funding any future deployments if adopted.
The observed queues were much shorter than expected, except the west approach, and travel time delays going through the roundabout were surprisingly moderate. The single-lane roundabout temporary deployment is not intended to improve the capacity of the intersection or to be compared with the normal signalized intersection operation. The emergency single-lane roundabout is intended to be deployed at large intersections of 2 major multi-lane roads when the signal is damaged and cannot be repaired for several days. In the past, these intersections were controlled by all-way stop signs resulting in a lot of driver confusion, road rage, total gridlock, unsafe conditions, and very long queues.