Managed lanes have been around for nearly 40 years, and different types of managed lanes help solve other transportation congestion challenges. These managed lanes restrict access to a road lane depending upon traffic constraints and congestion.
Vehicle gates are an excellent management solution for areas where the population is high, and managed lanes are needed on major roadways. Vehicle gates can easily regulate access to the managed lanes for various applications.
What are Managed Lanes?
Managed lanes are lanes on a roadway where drivers must meet specific requirements to drive in the managed lane. States can vary on what types of managed lanes they use based on the types of traffic congestion and city needs.
Managed lanes are generally road lanes on a freeway that are distinctive and different from the other lanes to make traffic flow more efficient and reduce congestion. Managed lanes can also change over time to respond to the evolving needs of traffic.
On freeways, managed lanes are generally located on the far left lane of the roadway for long distances. Commuter lanes fall into this category. And for short distances, the managed lane is typically on the right. An example of this would be a semi-trucks only lane.
Related Link: Warning Gates
Types of Managed Lanes
Depending on the state or county, the types of managed lanes can vary widely. The most common managed lanes are:
- Toll lanes
- Truck lanes
- High-occupancy vehicles (HOV) lanes
- Dynamic shoulder lanes
- Express lanes
- Interchange bypass lanes (usually transit, HOV, or truck only)
- Dual roadways where one lane is managed
- Separate express lane tollways next to or within the freeways
The most common type is the HOV lane for commuter traffic. HOV encourages others to carpool to work so that fewer vehicles are on the road during rush-hour traffic.
Benefits of Managed Lanes
By regulating, guiding, and redistributing traffic, managed lanes provide many benefits to the city and the drivers:
- Improves safety
- Enhances traffic operations
- Moves people and goods in a more efficient manner
- Reduces CO2 emissions and improves air quality
- Provides more mobility options to enhance travel advantages
- Provides dedicated lanes for public transit
- Improves transit efficiency
- Enhances travel reliability
- Enables more efficient and quicker trucking and commerce
- Funds transportation agencies and generates revenue
- Reduces congestion and travel delays
Do you need help identifying which vehicle gate would be most effective? Contact BBRSS to learn more about their complete line of vehicle gates.
Related Link: Roadway Industries
Challenges that Managed Lanes Often Have
Because managed lanes often restrict who can use it, there needs to be a management system for enforcing these restrictions. This system also needs to be flexible and dynamic to redistribute traffic during peak hours of travel.
An example of this is the HOV lane that may only be restrictive during rush hour peak times. The only drivers allowed in this lane during peak hours must have more than three passengers, or they may pay a toll to drive in this carpool lane. When it isn’t peak hours, the HOV lane may operate as a normal traffic lane that anyone can use.
Because the lanes can change based on traffic needs, it makes it difficult to enforce the restrictions. There are many ways these lanes can be enforced:
- Highway patrol violation
- Roadway markings to designate the lane with proper signage
- Separated lane using crash barriers to prohibit entry
- Sensors and cameras that validate and or charge vehicles in the managed lane
- Toll booths to admit entrance
- Direct access ramps to the managed lane
- Vehicle Gates with ITS sensors for automated regulation
Depending on the city or county, they may employ several of these measures to enforce the managed lane restrictions.
How Vehicle Gates Can Be Utilized for Managed Lanes
Utilizing vehicle gates to access managed lanes can be a very effective tool. This way, the vehicle or driver must be validated before being allowed to enter the restricted lane. And when you limit the number of access points, it is easier to control and manage traffic in the managed lanes.
Vehicle gates are very effective when used for:
Reversible HOV Lanes
Vehicle gates that can operate as an automatic warning provide the essential safety to Reversible HOA access. Not only do they warn vehicles, but they stop cars from entering the wrong way when traffic is flowing in the opposite direction.
Cameras and vehicle gates can validate how many passengers are in a vehicle before allowing entry. This ensures that the managed HOV lane isn’t overloaded regardless of high demand. And it helps alleviate bottlenecks that may occur for short distances.
Vehicle gates at tollways make the most sense because the vehicle must be validated as a paying customer before entry. Working in conjunction with other technologies to identify and charge the car, the ITS and vehicle gate can bar access until the customer pays.
By creating this first level of vehicle validation, vehicle gates can significantly reduce violators from traveling in the managed lane.
Vehicle gates are an Excellent Solution to Managed Lane Access
Vehicle gates are excellent for traffic control and restricting managed lane access. Made to open horizontally or vertically, vehicle gates can be customized to meet the needs of traffic and area restrictions.
Vehicle gates also save lives by restricting drivers from entering the wrong way on a high-speed road like a highway or expressway. By integrating a vehicle gate with your managed lane, you’ll be able to redistribute congestion, generate revenue, and enjoy driving near the city again.
BBRSS is the premier solutions provider of roadway managed lane products. We design, manufacture, and distribute roadway equipment like vehicle barriers that can be enabled with ITS technology.
Want a customized vehicle gate solution for your managed lanes? Contact BBRSS to customize a gate that meets your requirements and safety standards.
Related Link: Tollway Authorities