The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) is testing the effectiveness of traffic signal sensors for bicycles in Northfield.
The new radar bicycle sensor would detect bicycles waiting at Highway 19 or Second Street at Highway 3 in Northfield. When a bicycle is detected, it triggers a green light for through passage or a green left turn arrow.
MnDOT has collaborated with MS Sedco, an Indianapolis company that is providing the radar bicycle sensors, which have been deployed at the Highway 19 and Highway 3 to ensure that bicycles trigger the signal.
According to the agency, the sensor comes at no cost to Northfield and is the first such bicycle dedicated system used with a MnDOT traffic signal.
The intersection at Highway 19 / Second Street and Highway 3 in Northfield is a busy point as it is a link between the city’s two colleges, Carleton and St. Olaf, as well as downtown and the business community on the west side of the Cannon River.
MnDOT District 6 traffic operations engineer Nancy Klema said: “The Northfield bicycle community has been helpful and a good partner as we’ve worked on improving our roadways for bicycles.
“The knowledge and experience we gain through our work with them has helped us provide information and lessons learned to others in the state.”
MnDOT is working with BikeNorthfield, a community group, to improve the signal detection equipment with bicycles using the intersection. It will use the group’s feedback on this project.