A map that shows the South Bay Fiber Network and Manhattan Beach Fiber Network, which would facilitate the Manhattan Beach Advanced Traffic System (MBATS).

The city of Manhattan Beach is in the design phase of its proposed Manhattan Beach Advanced Traffic System (MBATS) project that will enhance commute times and improve the efficiency of traffic signals.

The project would extend the South Bay Cities Council of Governments’ South Bay Fiber Network’s (SBFN) core fiber optic ring. It proposes to upgrade traffic signal control equipment, according to Helen Shi, senior civil engineer for the city of Manhattan Beach.

This will help to support emerging traffic management technologies, such as dynamic signal timing, vehicle-to-vehicle communication, autonomous vehicle communication, emergency response priority treatment at traffic signals, and other smart cities initiatives that will relieve congestion during peak hours, improve safety, reduce traffic delays and allow the system to be more responsive to changes in traffic conditions.

The project will also allow city and county staff to remotely monitor and control the signalized intersections to maximize synchronization and minimize backups through real-time data analysis and timing changes.

LA Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro) is already connected to the SBFN, enabling its systems to collect information on current events, and traffic conditions from South Bay agencies, and provide it to third-party companies such as Google and WAZE, which pass on the information to the public. The enhanced connection will enable the provision of information on traffic conditions and events within the city of Manhattan Beach to these LA Metro systems.

“The project is going to improve traffic flow in the city and enhance incident management on our roadways. The technology will allow for interactive communication with all users of the roadway to make intelligent decisions of their travel plans,” Prem Kumar, city engineer for the city of Manhattan Beach, said.

The South Bay Fiber Network, still in the construction stage following the core ring’s completion in November 2020, provides fiberoptic infrastructure that offers cost-effective, high-speed broadband to municipal facilities throughout the South Bay subregion.

The fiber ring will support enhancements to the region’s mobility and accessibility systems, and to the networks that provide community services to South Bay residents, such as the city of Manhattan Beach.