Traffic flow in Civic was expected to improve on this day in 1979, as the lights would begin automatically adjusting their signals to suit the traffic flow.
The National Capital Development Commission chose the automatic lights over a "green wave" system, which used time clocks to control the traffic lights during peak hours.
This method had been tested in Belconnen Way from Bindubi Street to Caswell Drive, but there had been issues with the clocks getting out of sequence.
The computer-controlled system was expected to commence in about a year, rolling out in stages. Stage one would include the lights at Norbourne Avenue and London Circuit; Northbourne Avenue and Alinga Street; along Barry Drive; and along Edinburgh Avenue.
Stage two would extend to the intersections around Northbourne Avenue, Macarthur Avenue and Wakefield Avenue.
According to the NCDC, benefits of the new system would include minimum delays and queues, reduced air pollution and fuel consumption from stop-start driving, reduced peak hour congestion, a reduction in inner-city accidents, more efficient traffic light control for emergency vehicles, and immediate identification of system malfunctions by the computer.
Tenders would be called that month for setting up the project.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.