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Traffic Calming

Traffic Calming Measures

This is an archived document. For current information on Traffic Calming, visit the FHWA Office of Safety.


Descriptions and Pictures of

Traffic Calming Devices and Techniques

Devices and Techniques

Descriptions

Pictures

Bike Lanes

A portion of a roadway which has been designated by striping, signing, and pavement markings for the preferential or exclusive use of bicyclists.

photo: a portion of a roadway which has been designated by striping, signing, and pavement markings for the preferential or exclusive use of bicyclists.

Bulbouts/Neckdowns/

Chokers

Curb extensions at intersections that reduce curb-to-curb roadway travel lane widths.

photo of curb extensions

Center Islands

Raised islands located along the centerline of a roadway that narrow the width at that location.

photo of raised islands

Chicanes/Lateral Shifts

Curb extensions that alternate from one side of the roadway to the other, forming s-shaped curves.

photo of curb extensions that make a road shift directions

Closures (Cul-de-sacs)

Barriers placed across roadways to completely close through vehicle traffic.

photo of a cul-de-sac

Diverters

Barriers placed diagaonally across an intersection, blocking certain movements.

photo of a street barrier

Education

Instructions given to the residents on safe on-street vehicle travel.

photo of six people at a conference table with a television

Forced Turn Lanes

Raised islands located on approaches to an intersection that block certain movements.

photo of a forced turn lane

Median Barriers

Raised islands located along the centerline of a roadway and continuing through an intersection to block cross traffic.

photo of a median barrier

Police Enforcement

Involve employing the services of law enforcement agencies to impose the local safe vehicle laws, including those for posted speeds and traffic signal/signs.

photo of a portable traffic speed sign

Realigned Intersections

Changes in alignments that convert T-intersections with straight approaches into curving roadways meeting at right angles.

photo of a road with a "T" intersection

Roundabouts

Barriers placed in the middle of an intersection, directing all traffic in the same direction.

photo of a roundabout

Speed Humps

Rounded raised pavement devices placed across roadways to slow and/or discourage traffic

photo of a car moving over a speed hump

Speed Tables/

Textured Pavement/

Raised Crossings

Flat-topped speed humps often constructed with a brick or other textured material to slow traffic

photo of a raised crossing

Traffic Circles

Barriers placed in the middle of an intersection, directing all traffic in the same direction. Usually larger than roundabouts.

photo of a traffic circle

Sources: Traffic Calming, Selected Practices, Lessons Learned and Reed Ewing, Rutgers University, Center for Urban Policy Research.

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Updated: 01/10/2013
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