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Fiber Optic Technology Will Direct Fayetteville Traffic

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FAYETTEVILLE — The North Carolina Department ofTransportation is going to design a new computer system for traffic lights. Using fiber optic cable, the system will link almost 200 Fayetteville intersections, with the expected result being a dramaticimpact on traffic flow.

Driving around Fayetteville, at times, it seems like you're sitting aboutas much as you're moving. On a good day, you might make it through severallights in a row, but you quickly learn not to count on it. Mostdrivers agree the current computer system for traffic lights is outdated.Motorist Stefan Easter compares driving in Fayetteville to waiting for anaccident to happen.

Motorist Darryl Washington says the competition with school andmilitary traffic is heavy.

The state hopes a new state-of-the-art computer system will do muchtoward alleviating traffic problems. Motorist Vicki Tew says if it works,it will be a big help.

It will take $7 million and five years to put the new system in place.Some people, such as motorist Wayne Mitchell, aren't holding their breath.

The new system is hailed as much more sophisticated than the currentone. There will be cameras set up at key intersections, such as the one at Skibo and Morganton Roads.

Workers at a central location will be able to monitor traffic andadjust the timing of traffic lights, based on what's happening at thatvery moment.

Photographer:Rick Allen

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