Using All-way Stop Control for Residential Traffic Management

Report No: 96-R17

Published in 1995

About the report:

All-way, or multiway, stop signs are perhaps the most controversial form of residential traffic control. Residents are likely to request all-way stop signs more frequently than any other form of control. Stop signs are thought of as panaceas for many traffic problems. The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) receives requests for all-way stop control (AWSC) on residential streets primarily to slow traffic, but also to reduce cut-through traffic. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of AWSC for residential traffic management. The study was limited to the use of AWSC on local residential streets. A comprehensive review of the literature and a questionnaire survey of selected traffic engineering agencies were conducted to identify current use of AWSC. Three case studies using a series of AWSC intersections to reduce cut-through traffic on local residential streets were analyzed. The majority of traffic engineering agencies use AWSC warrants from the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). Several agencies use modified MUTCD warrants or a rating system because the MUTCD warrants appear inappropriate for residential streets with lower traffic volumes. When installed at a series of intersections, AWSC was effective in reducing cut-through volumes at the three locations. VDOT should continue to use a series of AWSC intersections as one tool to decrease cut-through traffic on local residential streets.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.

Last updated: December 17, 2023

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