More Red Light Cameras on the Way in CS

Three new College Station intersections will be getting what four intersections already have: red light cameras.

The city council has signed off on five new cameras that will watch over drivers to see if they run red lights. Offenders are sent videos and pictures of their transgression, and ordered to pay a $75 fine.

The new locations of the cameras, which will be installed over the next few months, are all located along Texas Avenue:

- George Bush Dr (eastbound) at Texas Ave
- George Bush Dr (westbound) at Texas Ave
- Texas Ave (northbound) at George Bush Dr
- Harvey Mitchell Pkwy (eastbound) at Texas Ave
- Texas Ave (northbound) at Holleman Dr

Texas Avenue was largely passed over in Phase 1 of the city's red light camera program due to major construction on the road at the time. The need, though, is great, according to Traffic Engineer Troy Rother.

"Texas Avenue has historically been the location where we have the highest number of crashes, and we were unable to really fairly evaluate those intersections," Rother said.

Since the introduction of the first four cameras in February 2008, College Station has sent more than 15,000 citations. Once the vendor, the city staff and the state has been paid out of the money collected, the city keeps the rest of the funds, which has to go towards transportation projects in the city.

Between February and September 2008, the city ended up in the black on its red light cameras, taking in about $181,000, according to Rother.

The locations of the next set of cameras, like the first, were decided on by a group that looked at the highest risk parts of town and analyzed data collected by the city's traffic engineers.

Since the beginning of the program, the numbers of citations issued have been on a bit of a roller coaster. Near the start of the collection process, the city was sending out 2,000 citations a month. Once the summer came, the numbers dropped to as low as 1,200 a month, likely due to the departures of students and families.

Come August, the citations were up to more than 1,500 again, but each month thereafter up to January 2009, the citations issued have declined. In January, 1,014 were issued according to the city.

For more information on the red light camera program, including the current camera locations, click on the link below.

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