May 7 Multi-Modal Transportation Board Meeting
On May 7, 2015, the Multi Modal Transportation Board ("MMTB") reviewed the findings and recommendations of the W. Maple Steering Committee that were outlined in a detailed presentation conducted by Fleis and Vandenbrink, the City's transportation consultants. This presentation walked through the Steering Committee's findings and recommendations, and used the SYNCHRO model to present both existing conditions on W. Maple, and to show how traffic would flow if a 3 lane configuration was approved for W. Maple. The safety benefits to be gained from a 3 lane configuration were discussed, including lower average speeds, lower speed differentials, reduction of accident rates and accident severity, reduced traffic conflict points, improved pedestrian crossings, and improved gaps in traffic for ease of turning onto W. Maple from the surrounding neighborhoods.
The MMTB discussed the objectives established by the Steering Committee, as well as the Steering Committee's recommendation to convert W. Maple from Southfield to Cranbrook from a 4 to 3 lane configuration after the roadway is resurfaced (two 10 ft. wide through traffic lanes, one 10 ft. continuous left turn lane, and two 7 ft. wide shoulder areas, without creating bike lanes), and to conduct a 6 month evaluation of the new configuration. The MMTB also discussed the Steering Committee's recommendations to enhance pedestrian crossings, add ADA ramps at all corners and crossings, add a right turn only lane for eastbound traffic turning south on Southfield Road, consolidate and enhance bus stops on the corridor, and add enhanced technology in the existing signals to control and optimize signal cycle lengths and timing. The Ad Hoc Steering Committee has completed their role with respect to the W. Maple Road corridor study. No further meetings of the Steering Committee will be held unless so directed by the City Commission.
After much input and discussion, the MMTB voted to recommend to the City Commission that W. Maple Road be reconfigured as a three lane road containing two 12 ft. wide through traffic lanes, one 12 ft. continuous left turn lane, and two 4 ft. wide shoulder areas without bike lanes. Further, to add the following additional conditions:
1. A 6 month trial period to commence after the road is repaved with a formal study by the City to consider the effects of the reconfiguration. The W. Maple Rd. Steering Committee will reconvene in April, 2017, to study the following measures, compared to the conditions that existed prior to the project, including:
a. Average speeds;
b. Average daily traffic;
c. Crash rates;
d. Cut through traffic during the PM Peak Hour on the following roads: S. Glenhurst Ave., Larchlea Dr., Chesterfield Ave., Pleasant Ave., Pilgrim Ave., Arlington Rd., Shirley Rd., and Lakepark Dr.; and
e. Level of Service at all signalized intersections.
During the test period, the MMTB will evaluate pedestrian crossing island locations, and if the test is successful, raised pedestrian crossing islands will be added at approved locations. The Steering Committee will also actively solicit public input from all interested stakeholders as a part of the process, and make a recommendation for the future of the corridor to the Multi-Modal Transportation Board.
2. Installation of ADA ramps at all corners and crossings;
3. Crosswalk marking improvements to be made at the signalized intersections;
4. Congestion relief improvements between Southfield Rd. and Chester St. including a right turn lane for eastbound traffic at Southfield Rd. and dual left turn lanes between Southfield Rd. and Chester St.,
5. Installation of marked crosswalks at the Chesterfield Ave. and Lakepark Dr. traffic signals;
6. The removal of low use bus stops;
7. The enhancement of higher use bus stops (concrete pad, benches, shelters etc.);
8. The addition of enhanced technology in the existing signals to control and optimize signal cycle lengths and timing.
It is anticipated that the formal recommendation of the MMTB will move on to the City Commission in June 2015. T
he City Commission will then consider the input of the Steering Committee, the MMTB and the public and make a final determination of the improvements, if any, to be made to W. Maple in 2016.
Visit the Multi-Modal Transportation Board webpage at www.bhamgov.org/multimodal to watch footage from the May 7th meeting.
Please note the footage will be replayed this week on the Municipal Access Channel on the following dates and times:
Friday, Saturday and Sunday - 8 pm
The Multi-Modal Transportation Board meets the first Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. at the Municipal Building. For additional information on the Multi-Modal Board's meetings visit www.bhamgov.org.