Sawgrass Expressway Mainline DMS Replacement

Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise (FTE) was seeking a firm to replace the antiquated Sawgrass Expressway Mainline Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) in order to provide a better form of real-time communications to motorists with a power backup system. DRMP was serving on a Miscellaneous Traffic Designs Contract and provided the professional engineering services to meet the challenges of replacing the DMS while utilizing the existing support structure and power subsystem.

DRMP was responsible for the intelligent transportation system (ITS) design to facilitate the replacement of existing DMS along SR 869 (Sawgrass Expressway) at MP 1.7, 6.6, 12.0, 10.1, 14.7 and 19.3.  Design required initial analysis of all current DMS on the FDOT approved product list and a memorandum of the recommended DMS brand/model utilizing full color displays compatible with other DMS utilized by FTE.  Size and weight restrictions were analyzed to ensure the structure could handle the new load. This required the design of a separate uninterruptible power system (UPS) within a separate roadside cabinet due to the system weight in-order to maintain 2-hours of backup power in the event of utility power failure. The DMS communication system connected to the existing fiber optic network that enabled full control of the DMS from Traffic Management Center (TMC) facilities.

The updated DMS system provides FTE with a more efficient and reliable way to communicate critical messages to drivers. The signs give FTE the ability to send emergency or urgent messages to the roadway’s commuters in a matter of seconds. The upgraded signs provide full color display for more eye-catching communication and ability to use more intuitive graphics such as route shields.

Key Facts




Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise (FTE)


6 walk-in dynamic message signs (DMS)

  • Intelligent Transportation System (ITS)
  • Dynamic message signs (DMS)
  • DMS replacement
  • Uninterruptible power system (UPS)
Services Provided:

Structural Engineering