ART-UTC: An adaptive real-time urban traffic control strategy

Rob Van Kooten, Pieter Imhof, Karst Brummelhuis, Maurits Van Pampus, Anahita Jamshidnejad, Bart De Schutter

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


A novel signal control strategy for urban traffic networks, called ART-UTC (the abbreviated form of 'Adaptive Real-Time Urban Traffic Control') is introduced. We propose an efficient algorithm for ART-UTC to determine the green priority of different rights-of-way at each intersection. The proposed algorithm takes into account the queue length on each link, the waiting time of the first vehicle in the queue, and the incoming traffic flow to the link. We also propose a law to determine the green times of each traffic light based on the queue length on the link that is controlled by that traffic light. An advantage of ART-UTC is that due to the simple computations involved, it can be used for real-time urban traffic control. To evaluate ART-UTC, two different urban traffic networks are simulated within the urban traffic simulator SUMO. The performance of ART-UTC is compared to the performance of a fixed-time traffic controller based on Webster's formulas and a vehicle-actuated traffic controller. The results show that by using ART-UTC, the total travel time of the vehicles, the average queue length on the links in urban traffic networks, and the average waiting time of the first vehicles in the queues on the links of the traffic networks are reduced significantly in the majority of the cases compared with the fixed-time and the vehicle-actuated controllers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2017 IEEE 20th International Conference on Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITSC)
Place of PublicationPiscataway, NJ, USA
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)978-1-5386-1526-3
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Event20th IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Transport Systems, ITSC 2017 - Mielparque Yokohama, Yokohama, Japan
Duration: 16 Oct 201719 Oct 2017
Conference number: 20


Conference20th IEEE International Conference on Intelligent Transport Systems, ITSC 2017
Abbreviated titleITSC 2017
Internet address


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