A new system to reduce traffic in downtown Atlanta could mean less accidents, less pollution and more money for local businesses.
According to a study from the American Traffic Coalition, the cost of having a traffic light on an interstate highway could drop by $2.4 billion annually, if the technology was deployed in a coordinated way.
The study was published Thursday by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP).
The study found that the cost savings could translate into billions of dollars in lower costs for businesses and individuals.
The report noted that the technology currently being developed could be deployed in as few as 30 cities, and could potentially save as much as $7.5 billion annually.
The ITDP is a nonpartisan group that researches transportation and environmental issues.
It released the study last week and said it found the cost benefits could be even greater.
The research showed that the costs associated with a traffic signal would decrease by nearly $3,000 annually for businesses in cities with a high percentage of traffic.
The impact on the average consumer of having an automated traffic light could be more significant.
The cost savings from a dedicated traffic signal could be up to $3.5 million per year in terms of reduced vehicle emissions and increased vehicle traffic, the study said.
The impact on businesses would be less, the report said.
The results of the study could also have a positive impact on traffic in other metropolitan areas, according to the study.
The study also found that a signal would save about $1,600 in the local economy each year, and the cost could be reduced by about $200.
The traffic light would have to be installed on an existing signal and would cost roughly $7,500.
The cost savings would be passed on to the community and businesses, according the study, which did not provide specific numbers.