Traffic Eng & Safety

Travel safety, complete streets, advanced signal tech, and VMT as a metric for environmental analysis in California

Traffic Signal Design: Complete Streets Application

This new course introduces the practical design considerations in traffic signal designs that are above and beyond the basic introductions. Within the framework of the California Vehicle Code, the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (CA MUTCD), and other national and state references with recommended practices and real-world illustrations, this course will explore the multi-modal design expectations from today's traffic signal designers in a complete-street environment.

This course will introduce complex signal phasing diagrams, typical features of controller firmware, and configuration of signal cabinets; and signal indications/heads placement and detection layout with respect to design applications for rail crossings, emergency vehicles, bus transit, bicycles, pedestrians, and cars.

Additionally, this course will introduce the design concept for bus rapid transit (BRT), light rail transit (LRT) and heavy rail. The course includes lectures, sample problems, and exercise projects that will familiarize the course participant with the design process that starts with preliminary and progress design submittals, as well as formats of design review comments and resolutions expected by typical public agencies.

While this course is suitable for traffic signal designers with varying experience, this course will be introduced as a sequential next-level course to Tech Transfer's TE-02 (Traffic Signal Design: Engineering Concepts), or equivalent.

The goal is for the course participants to become familiar with real-world, multi-modal, signal-design applications that accommodate various street types and intersections users.

Additional course detail is provided in the sections below.

  • Course Topics
    • Signal phasing (review of basics)
    • Complex signal phasing
    • Controller firmware features and signal cabinet configurations
    • Layout of signal heads and detections within Multi-Modal Contexts
    • Adaptive traffic control and other "next gen" options
    • Sample applications in various modes:
      • Pedestrians (hybrid beacons, lead pedestrian intervals and pedestrian scrambles)
      • Bicycles (Types I-III/IV bikeways)
      • Transit signal priority and bus rapid transits
      • Emergency vehicles (fire station and en-route), rail crossings (typical, pre-signal, queue-cutter)
      • Light rail transit
  • Course Outline
     Module 1: Overview of Multi-Modal Signal Design Topics
    • Traffic signals serve more than just the traffic mode: “Complete Street” environment
    • Examples of multi-modal signals
    • Consideration of context (street classifications, land use, special districts)
    • Applicable design references
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise
    Module 2: Complex Signal Phasings, Controllers, & Cabinets
    • Examples of complex signal phasing
    • Controller considerations: firmware / software
    • Cabinet configurations: (input & output files)
    • Relationship among phasing, controller firmware features, cabinet configurations
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise 
    Module 3: Signal Design for Pedestrians
    • Locations of Crossings & Ramps
    • Types of Crossing Control
    • Signal Phasing Considerations
    • Detection & Signal Indications
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise
    Module 4: Signal Design for Cyclists
    • Description of Class I/II/III/IV Bikeways
    • Types of detection
    • Signal Phasing considerations
    • Bicycle signal heads & phasing
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise 
    Module 5: Emergency Vehicles & Bus Rapid Transit
    • Emergency Vehicle Detection
    • Emergency Vehicle Preemption & Design Elements
    • BRT: Context & Detection Considerations
    • BRT: Transit Signal Priority & Design Elements
    • Preemption versus Priority
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise 
    Module 6: Heavy Rail & Light Rail Transit
    • Standards: CA MUTCD, CPUC General Orders, and AREMA
    • Railroad Preemption and Design Elements (Heavy & Light)
    • Limited Service Operations vs Flashing Red Operations
    • LRT Priority Design Elements
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise

    Module 7: Next Generation Traffic Control

    • Signal Coordination: Time-of-Day, Responsive, Adaptive: Overview, System Selection, Design Considerations
    • Signal Control: Central Control Systems
    • Signal Communications Systems
    • Connected Vehicles-Pilot Program Examples
    • Interactive Engagement Exercise
    Module 8: Bringing It All Together
    •  Interactive Engagement Exercise
  • What you will learn

    Students gain a good working understanding of concepts and engineering practices needed to develop plans for traffic signal installations within a multi-modal context.

  • Who should attend

    This is a next-level sequential course targeted for traffic engineers, technicians, and maintenance and construction personnel with adequate traffic signal design experience or prior training equivalent to Tech Transfer's Traffic Signal Design: Engineering Concepts course.

  • Course Prerequisites

      Please bring the following tools to the course: pocket calculator, engineer's scale (with 1:20 scale), 12" straight edge, and four colored pencils (red, green, blue, black).

      Optional item is a template with circles, squares and rectangles.

      Course participants will be exposed to Caltrans Standard Plans and Specifications, and are encouraged to review them online at

  • Course Instructors

      Bill Shao, PE, TE, PTOE, City of Los Angeles

      Bill Shao is a Principal Engineer with the City of Los Angeles. Currently the LADOT-lead for LA Metro's Capital Transit Design-Build and City's Capital ATSAC programs, he previously led LADOT's Design, Construction Management, Signal Systems, and ITS programs. Almost a 3-decade veteran with the City, he has been an instructor for Tech Transfer and formerly for LA Metro. An active participant of FHWA and TRB-NCHRP research panels, he holds a MS in Transportation Management from San Jose State University, a MS in Transportation Systems Engineering, and a BS in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Irvine. Mr. Shao is a California-registered Civil Engineer and Traffic Engineer.

      Claude Strayer, PE, RSP1, Senior Associate, Fehr & Peers Transportation Consultants

      Mr. Strayer is a Senior Associate in the San Diego office of Fehr & Peers. He has 11 years of experience in the design and implementation of traffic signals and signal systems, signing and striping, street lighting, temporary traffic control as well as pedestrian and bicycle improvements. Claude has completed designs for dozens of agencies, public and private entities, and institutions. He has also served as an adjunct engineering professor at Cuyamaca College in El Cajon, CA. Mr. Strayer graduated from the Northeastern University with a B.S. degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering in 2011, and is a registered Civil Engineer in California, Hawaii, and Arizona. He also is a certified Road Safety Professional (RSP1).

  • Registration Information

      Registration for this course occurs at the TechTransfer training host site. Use the button to the right to directly access the course page and registration portal. You will be asked to create a user account as part of the registration process.

      A confirmation email will be sent to you within two business days of TechTransfer receiving your paid registration.

      If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact the TechTransfer Registrar at (510) 643-4393 or

  • For more information

      To learn more about TechTransfer courses and credits, see their FAQ (

      To learn more about TechTransfer's cancellation, refund, and substitution policies, see How to Enroll (

      Cancellation Policy:

      The cancellation fee for this course is $75. At TechTransfer, there are no refunds for classes with registration fees of $75 or less. For all other classes, you may cancel your enrollment and receive a refund of your registration fee less $75, provided they receive your written request to cancel at least 5 full working days before the class is scheduled to begin. In lieu of canceling your registration, you may (1) transfer your registration to another TechTransfer class, (2) receive a tuition credit for the full amount, useable toward a future class, or (3) send a substitute in your place.

      Note: TechTransfer recommends you discuss any possible problems or online security issues with your IT person before you register for any online classes. If you are worried about connectivity issues, please contact the online training coordinator the week before the class to schedule a time to test your system. If you do not test your system and you have technical issues during a live online class, we will not provide a refund.

LTAP Subsidized

This class is offered at a reduced fee to employees of California's city, county, regional, and tribal public agencies

Course Fee

Standard Rate:

Public Agency Rate:



Course Credit

This course grants:

1.60 CEUs

Upcoming Sessions (0)

[not currently scheduled]


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Phone: (562) 985-2872