The Packet Post “TRAFFIC CALMING” PLAN- PUBLIC MEETING SCHEDULED FOR 8/1/19

“TRAFFIC CALMING” PLAN- PUBLIC MEETING SCHEDULED FOR 8/1/19

by: Press Release

 

CITY OF NEWBURYPORT
60 PLEASANT STREET • P.O. BOX 55
NEWBURYPORT, MA 01950
(978) 465-4400 • (978) 465-4452 (FAX)

DONNA D. HOLADAY
MAYOR

July 17, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Geordie Vining, Senior Project Manager, (978) 465-4400
PUBLIC MEETING SCHEDULED FOR 8/1/19 TO DISCUSS CONCEPT PLAN FOR TRAFFIC CALMING AT

EASTERN END OF HIGH STREET

Newburyport – There will be a public meeting in the Newburyport City Hall auditorium on Thursday
August 1, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. to discuss a draft concept plan for traffic calming at the eastern end of High
Street near the Newbury town line.
High Street curves and widens significantly between Allen and Marlboro Streets. There is a school bus
stop in this area of High Street at the top of Barton Court, plus March’s Hill park and an entrance to the
Clipper City Rail Trail. The neighborhood has expressed growing concern regarding safety risks for
pedestrians, bicyclists, and property due to the perceived speeds and some accidents in this part of the
corridor. Up to seven thousands vehicles travel through this corridor every day, and, while most drive at
approximately 25-30 mph, there are a number that drive faster than that each day. The curve of the
roadway interferes with sight lines, and the City has received reports of cars speeding past stopped
school buses as well as through the crosswalk while pedestrians were in the street. Cars have driven into
houses, fences, utility poles, and other cars parked in driveways and on the street in this corridor.

The way a road is constructed, particularly its alignment and width, has a greater influence on motor
vehicle speeds than regulatory speed limits and associated enforcement. The City asked consultant TEC
to develop a concept plan to address traffic calming in this area as part of the City’s Complete Streets
planning initiative. The concept plan would shift the granite curbing and remove excess pavement where
the road is currently up to 65 feet wide. Sidewalk bump-outs would be installed at Bromfield, Barton,
and Marlboro Streets and at the mid-block crosswalk to March’s Hill to improve sightlines at all
crosswalks, along with ADA-compliant wheelchair ramps. Most on-street parking would be retained near
the park. New raised granite curbed medians would be installed to physically calm traffic and reduce
speeds, and which could be made of granite cobble stones as planned near the High School or be
landscaped. The existing bicycle lanes would be widened from 4- to 5-feet, and the sidewalks on both
sides would be reconstructed in their existing materials of brick or concrete along with landscaped
buffers. In addition, the existing outdated signalized crossing to the west of Bromfield Street would be
replaced with a new pedestrian-activated signal. The concept plan can be viewed online at the
Newburyport Planning Office’s project web page at:
https://www.cityofnewburyport.com/sites/newburyportma/files/uploads/c._high_street_allen_to_marlb
oro_0.pdf . TEC has estimated that such a project would cost approximately $475,000 to design and
construct.

For more information, contact Geordie Vining, Senior Project Manager in Newburyport’s Planning Office,
at gvining@cityofnewburyport.com or (978) 465-4400 x6.

 

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