Large-Scale Transit Signal Priority Implementation: District of Columbia’s Path to Success

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, place - urban, infrastructure - bus/tram priority, infrastructure - traffic signals, land use - planning


transit signal priority (TSP), intersection selection, system verification testing


In 2016, the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) deployed transit signal priority (TSP) at 195 intersections in highly urbanized areas of Washington, DC. Years before deployment, DDOT outlined a multi-year process that would aid in the realization of their ambitious objectives. In collaboration with a broader regional implementation and in partnership with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), DDOT set out to apply a systems engineering driven process to identify, design, test, and accept a large-scale TSP system. Application of this systems engineering process led to the successful, widespread deployment of TSP in an urbanized operating environment. Although numerous research efforts to date focus on smaller scale efforts, this paper seeks to close gaps in the literature with a process-focused case study, highlighting intersection selection, system verification testing, and validation for acceptance as applied by DDOT for establishment of an operational, large-scale system. The paper concludes with a discussion of the lessons learned.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by SAGE, copyright remains with them.