Highway 401 stretches 817.9 kilometers (508.2 mi) from Windsor to the Quebec border. The part of Highway 401 that passes through Toronto is the busiest highway in the world, and one of the widest. In 2013 the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (MTO) embarked on a 4-year rehabilitation project of bridges and pavement at the Highway 401/400 Interchange. As part of this critical infrastructure project, the MTO faced important traffic operation challenges, mainly the nightly closure of Hwy 400 ramp from the Hwy 401 Express E for a six months period. In order to increase the efficiency and the safety of the operation, the MTO installed Automated Warning Signs (SwiftSign) and Automated Warning Gates (SwiftGate) from Versilis.
The gate’s high visibility improved safety for workers and motorists by effectively slowing traffic through the construction zone. The MTO tested the Versilis technology to reduce the time it takes to close/open lanes, which typically involves a crash truck and workers placing and removing barrels nightly. The use of the SwiftSign and the SwiftGate products increased worker safety by limiting their exposure to traffic and introduced potential cost savings for the ministry. Along with its strong performance on the worksite, the system received praise from the public, with positive feedback highlighting its ease of navigation and visibility, especially at night. During the entire 6 months of operation, no incidents were reported and no maintenance intervention was necessary on the gates.