Expert Blog: A Traffic Engineer’s Secret Alter Ego

Traffic Engineers: The modern day secret super hero, protecting the traveling public.

Have you ever had a close call? You’re driving in your car, looking for that “prime” parking spot or trying to think of a way to get through all the traffic. Your attention is elsewhere. You’re running late, you don’t have time for – Screech!  Suddenly, a car, a bike or, even worse, a person is right there in front of you! Somehow muscle memory kicks in, you slam your foot on the break. Hard. Through white knuckles and a thought of “OH SHOOT” (only you don’t say shoot), you manage to stop. Just in time.

During the post-close call and hot flash of panic, your mind demands to know one thing – where did they come from? They came from the same place that all close calls come from – outta nowhere.

This is where our mild-mannered friends step in to battle the “outta nowhere” events and save the day. Our talented dynamos and skilled professionals are known as Traffic Engineers in reality, they are life-saving super heroes. Ok, maybe a bit dramatic, but seriously, it takes well thought out plans to control transportation flow, consider public safety measures and create statistical traffic studies. These engineers save lives through their designs of our public spaces.

How is a Traffic Engineer’s alter ego a super hero?

Traffic Engineers design a safe flow of traffic with wayfinding signage, traffic signals, roundabouts and terminated vistas. They are the highly trained team members that deflect confusion and catastrophe, which is nothing short of saving the day! When municipalities and developers invest in the expertise of Traffic Engineers to help guide all types of vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians, safety becomes paramount and lives are saved. The specialized abilities of these men and women can really improve the experience of using roadways, going to schools, living in neighborhoods and getting to other destinations in safe and enjoyable ways. Transforming one-way arterials into two-way! Creating multi-modal complete streets for all forms of traffic! Designing an adequate queuing lane with a turn signal so you can safely live to see another day! Ok, once again, a bit over the top but you get the point.

At Millard North High School in Omaha, Nebraska, our Traffic Engineers put into practice these specific skills to improve traffic flow and safety of vehicles and pedestrians. With the largest student body in the state, Millard North has multiple heavy traffic times each day. To improve the movement in and around the school, the parking lot underwent a redesign, moving all pick-up and drop-off traffic in the same direction. A new longer queuing lane and turning lane with traffic signals was added, improving the entering and exiting time of drivers in the parking lots. With a focus on protecting the lives of students, parents and faculty, the highly trained Traffic Engineers of Lamp Rynearson once again used their special abilities to provide a safe and enjoyable travel experience at the largest high school in the state.

These people act like “average joes” just doing a job, but really, they’re more than meets the eye. Modern day defenders of the traveling public, protecting us all. Instrumental in helping us get to work on time, safely attend concerts, pick up kids from school and so much more. From buses and emergency vehicles to bicyclists and pedestrians, we need them. These mild-mannered Traffic Engineers, these life-saving super heroes.

Check out our video to learn more about our Traffic Engineers and the projects they’ve impacted.