ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – If you drive on I-270 or I-255 on a daily basis, you’ll start to notice Missouri transportation crews taking down those variable speed limit signs over the next couple of weeks.

The signs were installed in 2008 as part of a pilot project to the cost of nearly $1 million. The new technology was suppose to make the I-270/I-255 corridor safer and relief congestion.

After a five year study officials with the Missouri Department of Transportation determined the electronic signs didn’t perform as desired.

“But I won’t say its failure,” said MoDOT Assistant District Engineer Tom Blair.

Investigators noted that the electronic signs did reduce some traffic crashes. But both the driving public and law enforcement are widely dissatisfied with the system based on perception of congestion relief, compliance with the posted speed limits, and overall visibility of the signs, according to the MoDOT report.

Real-time information on the speed ahead will now appear on the digital message boards along the interstate where Blair said they already have motorists looking to get information.

“Now we’ll add a third line below the travel times whenever there is slowed traffic ahead,” he said.

The variable speed limit signs will be recycled for other projects.


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