Definition of Traffic Calming
The Federal Highway Administration and Institute of Traffic Engineers provide this description that encompasses the many aspects of traffic calming:
The primary purpose of traffic calming is to support the livability and vitality of residential and commercial areas through improvements in non-motorist safety, mobility, and comfort. These objectives are typically achieved by reducing vehicle speeds or volumes on a single street or a street network. Traffic calming measures consist of horizontal, vertical, lane narrowing, roadside, and other features that use self-enforcing physical or psycho-perception means to produce desired effects.
Projects/Studies on Traffic Calming in Estes Park
- Third Street Rehabilitation Concepts
The Town of Estes Park will implement a traffic calming pilot program on Third Street, North Court and South Court to convert the three roadways into one-way streets and introduce designated on-street parking lanes. This pilot program will allow residents to evaluate the one-way traffic pattern, which was the neighborhood-preferred traffic calming approach.
Public Works has presented numerous design alternatives to the neighborhood over the past year, and the preferred alternative would incorporate one-way vehicular travel on Third Street (US 36 to SH 7) with designated parking lanes on both sides of Third Street, as well as one-way travel with an adjacent parking lane on both North Court and South Court. North Court will flow eastward and South Court will flow westward during this pilot program. New "Do Not Enter" and "One Way" signs will be installed at intersections. Parking stalls will be striped along the roadways and will break at intersections and driveways. The parking stalls will be eight feet wide, which will leave a 13-foot-wide center drive lane on Third Street, and will leave an 11-foot-wide drive lane on both North and South Court. The signage and striping work for this pilot program will occur Tuesday, Nov. 17, and is planned to remain in place until the reconstruction project is completed.
The Town will announce an opportunity for public comments on this one-way street pilot program and the preliminary designs for the reconstructed streets this winter. For additional information, please contact email@example.com.
At the follow-up neighborhood meeting on August 26, the Town presented the pilot program survey results, traffic data collected during the program, and other comments from the survey participants. Residents felt that the pilot program was effective at limiting traffic volumes, but the traffic data still showed a presence of speeding vehicles between the barricades.
For a longer-term consideration, the residents concurred that they would prefer one-way travel and parking lanes on both sides of 3rd. Street, rather than the option of two-way travel and only one parking lane. It was determined that one-way travel from US 36 to SH 7 would be the optimal routing. The neighborhood did not feel a need to test different traffic calming concepts. Public Works agreed to begin the engineering design process and would present a 30% design of the one-way concept to the neighborhood by the end of 2020.
The "Road Closed to Thru Traffic" barricades for the traffic calming pilot program were installed on July 22 and will be removed on August 19. During this pilot program, the Town asked residents to provide input using the survey link below. The Town will host a follow-up neighborhood meeting to discuss the effectiveness of the pilot program and to continue the traffic calming discussion on Wednesday, August 26, 2020 at 5 p.m., outdoors at the intersection of 3rd Street and South Court.
The Town of Estes Park will test a traffic calming pilot program on Third Street to help reduce the amount of cut-through traffic between State Highway 7 and U.S. 36. Residents of Third Street provided feedback to the Town stating that traffic frequently speeds between the two highways, which creates an unsafe situation in the narrow and congested neighborhood roadway.
The Town will hold two outdoor, neighborhood site meetings to discuss this pilot program. The first meeting will be held Wednesday, July 15, at the corner of Third Street and South Court at 5 p.m., and will introduce the planned approach as well as an online survey that will be available to citizens during the testing period. The second neighborhood meeting will be held Wednesday August 26 at the same location, at the corner of Third Street and South Court, at 5 p.m. This follow-up meeting will discuss the effectiveness of the pilot program and will present the survey results, which will lead into a discussion to help the Town develop a solution for the future. Participants are asked to wear masks during the meeting. More information is contained in the recent press release.
After neighborhood feedback, the following items show some of the rehabilitation concepts for determination and implementation in 2021.
Progress Notes to Date (Feb 2020)
- Fourth Street Improvements
The 4th Street Rehabilitation Project added the principles of the Complete Streets Policy by expanding the sidewalk to incorporate bike lanes and reducing the width of the motor vehicle lanes, thereby reducing the speed at which motor vehicles travel.