Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Re-Paving Madison Avenue Fact Sheet

Madison Avenue Re-paving Fact Sheet

The Impact of Re-paving
The construction process for repaving and restriping the roadway is not comparable - in any way-  to the construction process for the trolley. Temporary lane closures may limit turning movements, availability of on-street parking, and loading zones, but traffic will continue to flow during the construction process. Construction will be completed in a matter of months.

The Impact of a Road Diet
Madison vehicular traffic is currently operating at 35-38% of its designed capacity.
Traffic models indicate that the proposed road diet will change the capacity to 45-49%.  On a Road Diet, Madison will still be able to handle twice as many cars as currently use the street.[1]

Other Potential Bike Routes
Creating a single east/west route for cyclists to use is unrealistic.  Parallel routes are being closely analyzed as additional east/west routes to Madison - not as alternatives. These routes are part of a 500 miles system of bike routes planned since 2005.  A city’s traffic system is only as good as the ability to move a variety of mode shares (bikes, cars, pedestrians, and trucks) equitably, efficiently, and safely throughout the entire city, and Broad Avenue is a great local example of how bikeable/walkable infrastructure results in increased sales, new businesses, and renewed investment.[2]

Sharing the Road
Bicycles are currently allowed to use Madison and are required by law to share the right-most lane with cars.  However, the current traffic speed, traffic volumes and adjacent land uses make bicycle lanes the most context sensitive option for bike traffic along Madison Avenue.  Bike lanes have been proven to increase safety by removing cyclists from the same travel lanes as motor vehicles, and such safety factors encourage more people to use bicycles rather than motor vehicles.

We should not “gamble” on the backs of business owners with this “experiment”.
Since the 1970’s, cities have been converting four-lane undivided roadways to a three-lane road with a two-way left turn lane.  The practices, techniques, and results are well documented in numerous studies. Madison Avenue meets many of the criteria of a roadway that should be considered for “road diet.”[3]

For more information, please contact Anthony Siracusa 901-843-3401 or Sarah Newstok

[1] Case studies from Kirkland, WA, Lewistown, PA, East Lansing, MI, Toronto, ON, Bellevue, WA, Santa Monica, CA, Long Beach, CA, Del Ray Beach, FL and Seattle, WA, indicate no loss in traffic volumes; In some cases the research shows increases in traffic volumes as economic activity increases

[2] Research from San Francisco, CA, Toronto, ON, London, UK, Baltimore, MD, Outer Banks, NC, Lodi, CA, , indicate that higher levels of bicycle and pedestrian activity generate positive economic outcomes along the stretch of roadway where changes were made to promote more bike/ped activity and calm motor vehicle speeds.

[3] Criteria include: Moderate traffic volumes (8-15,000 ADT), Transit Corridor, Popular or essential bicycle route/link, Commercial investment zones, Economic enterprise zones, Entertainment district, Main street

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