Sensors to be placed along major streets for traffic counts
Jun 11, 2020 01:36PM
By Travis Barton
By Travis Barton | [email protected]
West Valley City will have nine sensors placed along Redwood Road and 3500 South to assist with traffic counting.
Sensors will be placed at the 3500 South entrance from South Salt Lake and one every quarter mile along the road until Redwood Road, then head north every quarter mile.
The sensors come from Blyncsy, a data and analytics software company in Salt Lake City. Sensors will be paid for by the Utah Department of Transportation, who are piggybacking on West Valley City’s contract with Blyncsy. UDOT will provide West Valley City officials with all data from the sensors.
Mark Nord, redevelopment agency director, told the City Council in an April 7 study meeting they would like to expand these sensors into other major thoroughfares.
Nord said the traffic counts will help them pinpoint where retail customers are coming from and know where to focus their marketing.
Traffic counts are requested at times when the council is considering rezones or development agreements that would approve a subdivision, apartments or townhomes.
Once up and running, the sensors will report real time data, down to the hour.
“We’re excited about what this could give us in the future,” Nord said.
The sensors will ping off a person’s Bluetooth or possibly low tire sensors in newer cars if the Bluetooth is turned off.
When Councilman Lars Nordfelt brought up the concern of privacy, Nord said it is all anonymous.
“We wouldn’t be able to see any private info, just a cell phone,” Nord said.
According to the Blyncsy website, the company does not track serial numbers or phone numbers, only “anonymized data emitted through electronic signals.”
It also states the data is aggregated. “We believe in collecting anonymized data to better understand the habits and trends of groups of people,” the website states. “We do not visualize data on any one particular person or device.”
Signals that ping the sensors accumulate into billions of data points and are analyzed at “a population level, not at the individual level,” according to the website.