Press Release

June 5, 2024
Cardin, Van Hollen, Sarbanes Announce Over $620,000 to Improve Road Safety in Annapolis

WASHINGTON –U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and U.S. Congressman John Sarbanes (all D-Md) today announced $623,254 to improve road safety in the City of Annapolis. The funding will help the city implement an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) that uses Artificial Intelligence-based traffic signal technology to prevent car accidents.

The federal funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) grant program, which helps local transportation departments develop and implement safety action plans to better ensure the safety of drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians on roadways. The SS4A program was established and funded at $5 billion over five years by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, legislation the lawmakers worked to pass to support infrastructure initiatives across the country. In fiscal year 2023, the SS4A program delivered over $28 million to safety action plan projects in Maryland.

“Annapolis attracts millions to its vibrant downtown, waterfront and parks. Safe streets are critical not only to the city’s economy, but also the quality of life of its residents and visitors,” said Senator Cardin. “Retrofitting the city’s transportation infrastructure with new AI technology will ensure drivers, cyclists and pedestrians alike are all safer and is just another example of how President Biden’s historic investment is modernizing transportation infrastructure in Maryland and across the country.”

“New technologies hold great promise to help prevent roadway accidents that cause serious injuries and loss of life. With this funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Annapolis can harness AI to unlock better traffic management solutions that will improve road safety for everyone living in or traveling through the city,” said Senator Van Hollen.

“The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law continues to have a significant impact across Maryland’s Third Congressional District,” said Congressman Sarbanes. “An AI-powered advanced Intelligent Transportation System will help prevent accidents, ensuring the safety of all road users, regardless of their chosen mode of transportation.”

“The critical infrastructure this grant covers will make our roadways safer for residents and visitors, and I am proud of our Department of Public Works (DPW) team that identified the problem and sought funding,” said Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley. “These kinds of upgrades don’t come cheap. We are also grateful to our federal partners for acknowledging a critical need. I look forward to smoother traffic flow in the corridors outlined by our DPW team.”

According to the City of Annapolis, this project includes the installation of wide-angle video detectors at major city intersections, which will collect data on bicycle, pedestrian, micromobility, and vehicle travel patterns for an AI-powered safety analytics model. The ITS will help inform the implementation of DOT safety countermeasures to significantly reduce vehicle crashes – including those involving pedestrians – ease traffic during special events, and support safety-critical evacuations and military operations.