Denver gets a $6 million federal grant to develop Smart City transportation programs

Speer with a biker riding underneath. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
Speer with a biker riding underneath. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
Speer with a biker riding underneath. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)

Denver just got a big grant from the federal government to use technology to try to reduce traffic congestion.

The $6 million grant comes from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Advanced Transportation and Congestion Management Technologies Deployment Program.

The money will go toward three programs that are part of Denver’s Vision Zero Initiative to reduce deaths and serious injuries from crashes to zero.

  • A partnership with the traffic app Waze to use existing city transportation sensors and detection devices to share information about road closures, construction and dangerous intersections directly to the public.
  • New rules to turn highways in north Denver into “Freight Efficiency Corridors” that will shift truck traffic to non-peak travel hours and ideally reduce congestion, noise and pollution in neighborhoods. This would keep I-70, I-25 and I-76 as major truck routes while trying to mitigate some of the impact to surrounding communities.
  • Implementation of Automated Pedestrian Detection (APD) technologies known as Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons to improve pedestrian and driver interactions at difficult crossings.

“Denver’s transportation system must evolve as our city continues to grow,” Mayor Michael B. Hancock said in a press release. “These funds will play a critical role in addressing transportation and mobility challenges, like traffic congestion, while also delivering measurable, and innovative outcomes for our residents.”

You can read more about each of the projects here.

Denver also got a $1.3 million grant this week to study bus rapid transit on Colfax Avenue.

Erica Meltzer

Author: Erica Meltzer

Erica Meltzer covers government and politics. She's worked for newspapers in Colorado, Arizona and Illinois and once won a First Amendment Award by showing up in the wrong place at the wrong time. She served in the Peace Corps in Paraguay and can swear fluently in Guarani. She gets emotional about public libraries. Contact Erica Meltzer at 303-502-2802, or @meltzere.