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Traffic Engineering

Providing and Maintaining Safe and Efficient Movement of Traffic in the City of Albuquerque

The City's Traffic Engineer and staff have a number of responsibilities, however, the mission of the traffic engineering division is to provide safe and efficient movement of traffic in the City of Albuquerque.

The Traffic Engineering division uses engineering techniques and standards to operate and maintain traffic signals, pavement markings, traffic signs and street lights on City infrastructure while initiating traffic calming and addresses obstruction issues to assure the safe, efficient, and expeditious movement of vehicles and pedestrians.

Safe and efficient movement of traffic in the City of Albuquerque is achieved through the optimal use and maintenance of the most appropriate traffic control devices or equipment. It is the goal of the division to maximize use of the resources, streamline the procedures that provide for the safe and efficient movement of traffic, and respond as soon as we become aware of need. Traffic signal O&M is a 24/7/365 operation.

The City of Albuquerque has adopted federal criteria which can be viewed by searching the Manual for Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD).

Mission Essential Functions

  • Intelligent Transportation System Implementation
  • Traffic Signal Maintenance
  • Sign Maintenance
  • School Zone Flashing Beacon Maintenance
  • Traffic Signal Timing Plans
  • Blue Staking of Signal Equipment
  • Markings Maintenance

Within the Traffic Engineering Division, there are three specific sections:

  • Traffic Management
  • Traffic Signs and Markings
  • Traffic Signals

Traffic Signals is responsible for maintaining the traffic signal system in the City. Staff perform routine maintenance and emergency repairs to all traffic signals, signal systems, school zone flashing beacons, and warning lights. Staff also repair and maintain the complex electronic circuits of the microprocessor controllers. They also are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to signal knockdowns or malfunctions. We maintain the current system through troubleshooting and repair and improve the operation of the signals through signal timing changes. 

The ITS component of Traffic Signals is responsible for all traffic timing and signal corridor coordination. We observe and analyze traffic patterns to mitigate traffic issues.

Traffic Engineering staff is responsible for handing service requests, interacting with the public, other city departments, and consultants and contractors. Also, record keeping, traffic studies, engineering support for the Traffic Engineering field operations allow the design and layout of various traffic control devices. Additionally, staff performs speed studies, turning movement studies and collects traffic count data. They write work orders to answer citizen concerns and requests from the public regarding the need for traffic control signs and markings. 

Traffic Engineering operation and maintenance programs meet the MUTCD, City, State, and Federal standards. 

Traffic Signs and Markings fabricates, installs, and maintains signs and pavement markings. Staff is responsible for maintaining the traffic control signage and paint markings throughout the city. Staff duties include fabricating and installing stop signs, yield signs, no parking signs, street name signs, and many other special signs. This section also is responsible for the pavement markings on the city streets, including yellow center lines, white edge lines, cross walks, and stop bars.

Traffic Signs and Markings restores all striping as needed and maintains all markings for loading, fire hydrant, parking, and specialty zones. Additionally, they are responsible for fabricating in-house and replacing all worn, faded, and vandalized MUTCD approved regulatory, warning and guide signs.

Major Accomplishments Annually

  • Implement the NTMP program
  • Install or refresh pavement striping on City Roadways.
  • Address, installed or repaired non-urgent signs
  • Inventory the traffic sign infrastructure of the City in order to comply with Federal Highway Administration requirements
  • Repair of approximately 72 high mast highway lights
  • Program and integrate traffic signal controllers, CCTV cameras, and count stations. 
  • Develop, implement and adjust the signal timing plans along major corridors
  • Reconfigure and maintain pedestrian modules
  • Traffic signal intersection improvements (installation of mast arms, signal heads, conduit, cable, etc.)
  • Complete intersection construction evaluations, including new cable, foundations, J-boxes, etc.

Traffic Engineering Q & A

Q.) Does the Traffic Engineer have the responsibility for street lighting?

A.) Yes. The Traffic Engineer approves locations and PNM installs the street lights.

The policy of the city is that arterial (and selected collector) streets be lit to standards for arterial streets. On all other streets, 100 watt high pressure sodium vapor lights shall be located at all intersections, on cul-de-sac streets over 200' in length, at right angle turns, and at mid-block locations where block lengths exceed 500'.

Q.) Does the Traffic Engineer have the responsibility for private ways?

A.) No

Q.) Who is responsible for traffic signs?

A.) Street name signs are installed by the city by the Traffic Engineering Division for existing streets. Developers of new subdivisions installs new signs. The developer is also responsible for special curve warning signs. All other traffic signs are installed by the City at City expense.

Q.) Who determines when a traffic signal shall be added to the city infrastructure?

A.) The determination of where and when traffic signals are to be installed shall be by the Traffic Engineer.

Q.) I would like to add a wall or fence to my property, who at the City can help?

A.) Planning approves any modification or installation. The new wall can not interfere with a drivers line of sight approaching an intersection.

 Q.) I am moving oversized, overweight, and/or over length truck load through the city, who must I contact?

A.) The traffic engineering division issues the permit for movement or operation of oversized, overweight, and over length vehicles in city streets. Call 311.

Q.) What are the duties of the Traffic Engineer?

A.) The duty of the Traffic Engineer is to determine the installation and proper timing and maintenance of traffic control devices; conduct engineering analysis of traffic issues and devise remedial measures; conduct engineering investigations of traffic conditions; cooperate with other city officials in the development of ways and means to improve traffic conditions; and carry out such additional powers and duties as mandated by city codes and ordinances.

Q.) Who has the authority to place and maintain traffic control signs, signals and devices within the city?

A.) It shall be the general duty of the Traffic Engineer to determine the installation and proper timing and maintenance of traffic control devices.

Q.) I believe our neighborhood has a problem with traffic, who at the City is responsible?

A.) Traffic Engineering reviews existing neighborhood traffic management policies and assesses the problem. Search for additional information at the Neighborhood Traffic Management Program (NTMP).

Q.) I understand the NTMP is being assessed?

A.) Yes, Traffic Engineering a new neighborhood traffic management program has been approved  and is being implemented

Q.) How can I have a banner placed in the right of way?

A.) Street Banners if specifically approved by the Traffic Engineer and in locations designated, may be displayed. As approved, contact 311.


Traffic control signals, signs and markings.