The Michigan DOT leased seven variable speed limit trailers for six months at a cost of approximately $400,900.
Made Public Date


United States

Summary Information

Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) teamed up with Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Michigan State University for an 18-month study to test the use of variable speed limits (VSL) in work zones. The Michigan study is part of a larger FHWA-sponsored variable speed limit pilot program.

MDOT opted to lease equipment through a contract that included development, design, installation, calibration, and maintenance over six months for $400,900. By leasing the equipment, MDOT did not need to maintain or store the equipment after construction ended.

The VSL system, which was deployed along I-96 in Lansing, consisted of seven trailers with remote traffic microwave sensors, solar power, controllers with radio frequency communication, and light-emitting diode (LED) speed displays. Work zone speed limits were based on traffic congestion, weather, presence of workers, and other factors.

See Also:
Variable Speed Limit System: Development, Demonstration, and Evaluation at and Michigan Department of Transportation and Michigan State University, Field Test of Variable Speed Limits in Work Zones (In Michigan), Final Report, September 2003 at

Click here for pictures of the VSL system in Michigan (81 KB).

Cost of Variable Speed Limit System in Michigan

Cost of Variable Speed Limit System in Michigan
Publication Sort Date
Michigan DOT

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System Cost

Project cost: $400,900 (2002).