Neighborhood cut-throughs no longer quick, easy ride
Medians, bump-outs, other methods used to slow nonlocal traffic
Monday, September 29, 2008 3:13 AM
By Martin Rozenman
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
Cut-through traffic is the curse of many neighborhoods.
Motorists on a mission to avoid traffic lights and busy streets speed by, endangering pedestrians and children. They even dent property values.
To slow them down, traffic engineers have gone beyond the speed bumps of the 1970s. Now, they narrow roads with curb bump-outs, traffic circles and medians. Brick crosswalks, stripes and raised intersections keep drivers on their toes and their toes on their brakes.
…Cities across central Ohio are incorporating them to preserve their neighborhoods.
Tara Hill Drive, which runs 1.3 miles between Coffman Road and Muirfield Drive in Dublin, is the epicenter for speed control.
There are curb bump-outs at 12 intersections, six medians, three traffic circles and two midblock bump-outs, said Jean-Ellen Willis, the city’s engineering manager for transportation.
The $660,000 project gained momentum in 2002 when residents complained of high-speed, cut-through traffic, notably from Dublin Coffman High School. Four years later, Tara Hill Drive became the poster street for neighborhood speed control.
A study showed that safety improved while speed and traffic volume has been reduced, Willis said. In addition, property values have been maintained.
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