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Street Division

Traffic Signals

Photo of Traffic Signal

There are over 1,600 signalized intersections within the City of San Diego. Traffic signals are top priority for Street Division. When there is a problem, we respond within two hours. Our signal technicians work around the clock to keep the signals functioning properly.  

The process of determining where traffic signals are installed is a complicated one. A point system, based on traffic flow and crash rate at that intersection, is used to determine whether a signal is warranted. In some areas, such as El Cajon Boulevard, Miramar Road, Mira Mesa Boulevard and Downtown, traffic lights are coordinated to facilitate commuter or otherwise heavy traffic flows on major streets. Each signalized intersection is run by its own computer similar in size to a 286 PC. The computer observes the amount of traffic flow and can trigger the lights for cross traffic. Lights on major thoroughfares are programmed to stay green longer during peak travel times (rush hour). 

The Electrical Section relies heavily on the public to inform us when a traffic signal is out or malfunctioning. To report a malfunctioning traffic signal, please call 619-527-7500 as soon as possible, or use the Get-It-Done application.