Amended City Council Workshop


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  ITEM 1.       
Meeting Date: 06/26/2018  
Submitted For: Rick St.John Submitted By: Nikki Coking, Management Analyst
Department: Police  

Subject
RED-LIGHT CAMERA SYSTEM STUDY FOLLOW-UP
Presented by: Rick St. John, Police Chief
Purpose and Recommended Action
The purpose of this item is to provide further follow-up on a Council Item of Special Interest first brought forward by Vice Mayor Tolmachoff on February 21, 2017, regarding the possible use of red-light cameras in the City of Glendale.  Today's presentation is an opportunity for staff to update Council on the additional information requested.  The Police Department collected the requested information during the follow-up phase and is now seeking guidance on Council's preferred next steps for this Item of Special Interest.
Background
On February 21, 2017, Vice Mayor Tolmachoff requested information, as a Council Item of Special Interest, regarding the possible use of red-light cameras in the City of Glendale to help prevent accidents at dangerous intersections.  On June 6, 2017, staff presented information to Council regarding red-light cameras, seeking guidance on whether or not to move forward with a red-light camera study.  Council opted to move forward with a study period of 30 days at a specific problematic intersection.  On November 21, 2017, staff presented information to Council regarding the information collected during the study, seeking guidance on Council's preferred next steps.  Council requested additional information in five specific areas:
 
  1. Provide information regarding which Arizona cities currently have or have had red-light cameras and the reason for the removal.
  2. Provide information regarding whether or not Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S.) allow a City to enhance fee structures or determine special red-light enforcement areas.
  3. Provide information regarding an evaluation of engineering designs to determine if changes can reduce crashes.  
  4. Provide information regarding a comparison between utilizing signs that notify violators versus enforcement. 
  5. Provide additional information regarding red-light camera systems to include the cost, contract requirements, and feasibility.

Council requested the Police Chief return to a future workshop with the additional information and present the findings.

Analysis
1.     A survey of Arizona police agencies resulted in a total of 19 agencies who currently have or have had red-light and/or speed cameras.  There were 13 agencies with speed cameras, 13 agencies with red-light cameras, and 7 agencies with both red-light and speed cameras.  Reasons for removal of the cameras include a lack of Council support, community feedback, the locations of the cameras not supporting the mission, no reduction seen in accidents, and contract disagreements.
 
CITY/COUNTY/TOWN RED-LIGHT CAMERAS SPEED CAMERAS STILL IN USE
Avondale X   No
Chandler X X Yes
El Mirage   X Yes
Eloy   X No
Glendale X   No
Globe   X Unknown
Mesa X X Yes
Paradise Valley X X Yes
Payson   X No
Peoria X   No
Phoenix X X Yes
Pima County X   No
Scottsdale X X Yes
Show Low X X No
Star Valley   X No
Superior   X No
Surprise X   No
Tempe X X No
Tucson X   No

2.     Arizona state law allows, if not commands, municipalities to impose penalties for violations such as red-light running.  A.R.S.§ 28-626(B)(3) states “a local authority shall adopt ordinances or regulations relating to the control and movement of traffic, including parking or standing ordinances or regulations that provide for the imposition of civil penalties on the violation of the ordinance or regulation.”  The City of Glendale may enact ordinances to govern civil traffic, including red lights, and may impose its own fee structure for violations.  Glendale’s fine, according to the schedule that became effective February 1, 2016, is $243.

3.     Between 2003 and 2005, the City secured a company to conduct a two-year evaluation on the impact of adding one second of yellow light time to five traffic signals.  After one year, the results indicated red-light violations occurred at the same frequency.  The City of Glendale follows the Institute of Transportation Engineers to calculate traffic intervals and signals.  An increase to yellow light intervals does not change the rate of red-light violations; however, flashing yellow lights have been found to be more effective in establishing who has the right of way when making left turns.  Additionally, median modifications have shown an increase in visibility of oncoming traffic for left turning vehicles.  The City of Glendale Engineering Division has three projects in various phases to deploy flashing yellow arrows for left turning vehicles at intersections.  In 2007, a two year red-light photo enforcement pilot program was initiated in Glendale at the intersection of 59th Avenue and Peoria Avenue.  Results of the pilot program showed that red-light violations decreased after a few months; however, final results suggested the majority of red-light violations were not likely to result in crashes.  Currently, the Engineering Division has identified safety enhancements at 5 out of the 10 police public safety zones, and road safety assessments have been completed within these intersections. 

4.     A comparison study was conducted and each test was completed on a Wednesday between 8:00 and 11:30 a.m., utilizing a speed trailer.  In the first test, utilizing only signs, results showed 26 speeding violations.  In the second test, utilizing both signs and enforcement, results showed 26 speeding violations.  In the third test, with no signs and no enforcement, results showed 24 speeding violations.  Comparison test results indicated there was no significant change in driving behavior.

5.     In conducting a request for information of red-light camera systems, staff researched multiple companies and determined the following factors:
  • Installation and maintenance would be at no cost to the City
  • Systems utilize a web-based host at no cost to the City
  • End user training for the systems is all-inclusive and at no cost to the City
  • System users will need to hire an administrator to manage the camera system program, which would result in a cost to the City
  • There are multiple fee structures with systems to include flat rates per camera or citation
  • System contract terms vary between companies
  • Systems utilize high-definition/resolution cameras 
  • Systems provide real-time views of intersections
Previous Related Council Action
At the November 21, 2017 Council workshop, staff presented information collected during the red-light violation study that was conducted.
 
At the June 6, 2017 Council workshop, staff presented information regarding red-light cameras, as follow up to a Council Item of Special Interest.

On February 21, 2017, Vice Mayor Tolmachoff requested information, as a Council Item of Special Interest, regarding the possibility of red-light cameras in the City of Glendale.
Attachments
Power Point Presentation


    

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