GULF BREEZE — U.S. Highway 98 drivers may notice smoother trips and faster travel times following traffic signal retiming and coordination efforts by design firm DRMP, Inc.

Ben Faust, with DRMP, on Monday addressed the matter with Santa Rosa commissioners.

After conducting a signal timing study and making adjustments along U.S. 98 from Orion Drive to Kelton Boulevard, DRMP measured 30,000 trips. The firm found a time savings of 158,000 vehicle hours per year and a fuel reduction of 66,000 gallons of fuel per year.

"There is a lot of data that we processed through there," Faust said. "It was because we were able to really get things under control and reduce the through-trip times for the peak hour traffic both a.m. and p.m. we had a really high benefit-to-cost ratio just per the high volume of traffic moving through there.

"We do have things we can address with that kind of system associated with the school zones, beach events, and of course construction traffic is always going to cause tie-ups from time to time."