Good Question: Wichita LED Highway Signs

By: Jeff Herndon Email
By: Jeff Herndon Email

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

This came to us via Twitter. It is a good question about the new LED signs recently placed on Wichita highways.

Apparently, one viewer has noticed that there never seems to be anything on the signs. He asks, “Why, after an 8-million-dollar price tag, are the signs blank?” Good question.

Driving around Wichita, you have probably noticed these big signs, and, like one KAKE viewer, you may have noticed that they never seem to say anything. There are 21 of these signs spread across Wichita highways. It’s all part of K-DOT’s 8.8-million-dollar Wichway Intelligent Transportation System. These signs are just part of the project, which costs about $600,000 per year to operate. There are 38 traffic sensors and 28 cameras, all of which can be accessed on K-DOT’s “wichway.org” website. A viewer wanted to know why, if they never seem to do anything, were the signs put up in the first place. I spoke with a technician at K-DOT, and he told me the signs are working. For now, the signs will only inform you of accidents or construction, but there are plans in the works for the signs to show things like travel times to major destinations, such as downtown. Bottom line, if you see nothing on the sign, it’s a sign you drive will be a good one.

If you have a good question, send it to me at news@kake.com. I’ll do my best to answer your good question every Thursday on KAKE News at 6.


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