Delays At Temecula’s Winchester/Ynez Intersection: Study
TEMECULA, CA – A Washington-based company that sells data on traffic and transit patterns has found that one intersection in Temecula delays drivers more than any other in the state: Winchester Road on Ynez Road.
But are the findings correct?
INRIX has compiled the US Signals Scorecard with GPS data from cars and cell phones. Billed as the first nationwide analysis of individual traffic lights and intersections, the scorecard examined 210,000 intersections in California and the United States in October and determined how many cars were passing through or idling while they waited for a traffic light to change .
The study found that the Winchester / Ynez intersection delayed motorists more than anyone else in the state, with the exception of two. Newhall Ranch Road on Bouquet Canyon Road in Los Angeles County was the worst and Newport Boulevard on W. 19th Street in Orange County was the second worst.
Because the Temecula intersection is so heavily frequented, according to the report, all the seconds of all vehicles that were delayed at the intersection added up. Although there are only 24 hours in a day, INRIX has recorded 1,081 “daily delay hours” at the intersection, according to the drivers’ GPS data. They could not be counted for drivers who do not use GPS or who disable their location services on cell phones.
INRIX found that only at the Temecula / Ynez intersection were given the green light 33.7 percent of the time, and the average time they spent idling at a red light was 40.4 seconds.
When you consider that the intersection includes three left-turn lanes from Ynez northbound to Winchester westbound – with a freeway right there – comparing it to many other California intersections may not be entirely fair. Anyone familiar with Southwest Riverside County could handle other major delays in the area as well.
For example, weekend and afternoon rush hour traffic flow can get insane along Murrieta Hot Springs Road east of Interstate 215 in Murrieta. And while big improvements are underway, the Railroad Canyon Road exit from Interstate 15 at Lake Elsinore has baffled drivers for years as traffic signals east and west of the freeway are among the bottlenecks during afternoon rush hour.
When Patch reached out to INRIX to ask questions about their report, we were directed to the company’s Signals Scorecard Map, which allows users to view data on all of the intersections examined by INRIX.
Pat Thomas, Public Works Director for the City of Temecula, confirmed that the Winchester / Ynez intersection is one of the busiest in the city, but traffic flow is always monitored – literally – for improvements.
From a command center in Temecula’s town hall, the city’s employees keep an eye on drivers thanks to surveillance cameras at important intersections. Of the 127 traffic signals in the city, 25 surveillance cameras are installed. From the town hall, the timing for intelligent traffic signals can be adjusted if warranted and any intersection mishaps can be quickly resolved, Thomas said.
The Southwest Sheriff’s Station also has the video feed, Thomas explained.
This type of technology is so helping avoid traffic jams that by the end of the year an additional 15 cameras will be installed along the city’s three main corridors – Winchester Road, Rancho California Road, and Temecula Parkway – thanks to federal dollars spent by Caltrans. Thomas continued. The grant will also fund the technology to ensure signals keep vehicles moving, he said.
“It will improve the flow of traffic,” said Thomas of the project.
What is your opinion? Where are the biggest bottlenecks in Southwest Riverside County?