Columbus Consolidated Government
Neighborhood Traffic Calming Policy
I. GENERAL INFORMATION
What Does Neighborhood Traffic Calming Mean:
The term “Neighborhood Traffic Calming” is used to describe ways to control the flow of vehicular traffic through neighborhoods in such a way as to not disrupt the normal serenity of the neighborhood. Normally Traffic Calming will be applied to address excess
within or through a neighborhood. Increased volume and increase speed can lead to more dangerous, less pleasant streets and discourage their use by bicyclists and pedestrians. Neighborhood Traffic Calming seeks to provide an atmosphere where automobiles, pedestrians, and bicyclist can safely share the roadways.
Goals of Traffic Calming:
Traffic Calming is the implementation of measures including Driver Education, Enforcement and Structural measures or any combination of these elements to bring about a favorable change in the behavior of the motorist along a particular section of roadway. Traffic Calming measures will be applied to some extent to any street that exhibits a problem, however arterial and collector streets are not usually considered appropriate for Structural Traffic Calming measures.
Interim or First Response Measures:
When Traffic Calming may be warranted or and conditions may be change by other than construction of Traffic Calming measures, the following plans of action may be implemented. If they bring about the desired results then no further measures will be needed. These measures may be considered prior to the receipt of the “Initial Interest Petition” or used after the petition is returned to the Traffic Engineering Division, at the discretion of the City.
will target a project area and use various methods to make people aware of the danger of speeding. Options include the use of Public Safety personnel to speak to neighborhood organizations and provide printed information to be distributed throughout the neighborhood. The use of Speed Trailers to instantly display the speed of vehicles in the project area. The Speed Trailers will alert drivers of their speed. Many motorists who are guilty of speeding may not be aware that they are exceeding the speed limit. Should one if the educational methods resolve the issue, no further action will be necessary.
enlists the help of our Public Safety Departments to focus enforcement efforts on the project area. Should this effort resolve the issue, no further action will be necessary.
Temporary Speed Tables
are being considered as an interim measure for some locations. We are planning to use “portable” speed tables constructed of rubber, which can be installed and later removed. These devices may solve less sever problems. It is anticipated these speed tables may be in an area for up to 6 months and then relocated to another area for use.
Non-Qualifying Streets for a Traffic Study:
While the focus of installing structural Traffic Calming measures will be primarily on local streets, some local streets will not qualify for Traffic Studies. In order to be considered for a Traffic Study streets must meet a minimum criteria listed below:
1. A prospective street must be a minimum of 1/4
mile in length or 1,320 feet in length, between uninterrupted intersections.
2. A prospective street must carry at least 500 vehicles per day.
3. No Private Streets
II. REQUEST FOR A TRAFFIC STUDY
1. Report the Concern – Notify the Citizens Service Center by calling
706-653-4000, and request a
2. The Citizen Service Center will collect the following information for CitiLink assignment to Traffic Engineering:
a. Name of person requesting the petition. (the requesting person must be a home owner on the street where the Traffic Study is requested.)
b. Correct mailing address including zip code.
c. Daytime telephone number or contact phone number
d. Street name where study is requested.
3. Traffic Engineering will make contact with the requestor and provide them with:
a. “Initial Interest Petition Form”:
b. A Tax Map identifying the affected area:
c. A point of contact in the Traffic Engineering Division:
d. Written Explanation of what the requestor needs to do before the Traffic Study can continue:
4. The Initial Interest Petition Form requires that a minimum of 20% of the residents in the affected sign the petition before the Traffic Study is scheduled. The Initial Requestor or a representative of a neighborhood group will be responsible for circulating the petition and returning it to the Traffic Engineering Division.
5. The Initial Interest Petition must be returned to the Traffic Engineering Division within 30 days or the request is dropped. Should circumstances prevail that require a short extension of up to 10 days, the petitioner is required to contact the Traffic Engineering Division with the request for and extension.
III. CERTIFICATION OF PETITION
The Traffic Engineering Division will validate the signatures on the petition and schedule the study. If there are discrepancies the requestor may be contacted for clarification. If sufficient signatures are not obtained the petitioner will be notified and the request closed. A new request may be submitted after a 12 month waiting period.
IV. TRAFFIC STUDY
1. A Traffic Study will be scheduled as soon as practical but in no case longer than 60 days after the petition is turned in and verified. The study shall be conducted for a period of at least 5 days unless otherwise requested by the petitioner, or unless circumstances dictate a study to be extended over a weekend.
2. Roadside Traffic Counters will be used to gather data on Speed, Volume and Vehicle Classification. Depending on the length of the street, several traffic count stations may be installed in order to obtain a true picture of the traffic pattern on the roadway.
3. All Traffic Studies will be scheduled on a “First In / First Out” basis. The City reserves the right to adjust this schedule if circumstances warrant.
V. EVALUATION OF STUDY
1. The Traffic Engineer will evaluate the study results based on pre set criteria to determine if a problem exists with either speed or volume. (see Table 1)
2. Information from the completed study is evaluated in accordance with the criteria in this policy. These criteria are used as bench marks to identify the presence of problems:
- The 85
percentile speed exceeds the posted speed limit by more than 10 mph, based on the total number of vehicles counted for the study period. (Study period shall be at least 5 days and include at least 3 week days).
- The volume of traffic on the project street exceeds the normal traffic volume by 20% for a period of 3 of 5 week days. Normal traffic volume is calculated by:
Single Family Detached = Number of homes times 10 trips per day.
Multifamily = Number of units times 7 trips per day.
When a Traffic Study shows the need for Traffic Calming measures to be installed, the Traffic Engineering Division will design suitable measures to accomplish Traffic Calming. The Criteria in the in
will be used to set priorities in choosing streets where Traffic Calming measures will be constructed.
Priority Criteria to Rank Streets Needing Traffic Calming
Basis for Point Assignment
Speeds 10 mph above posted speed limit (assign 5 points for every 1 mph)
Average daily traffic volumes (1 point assigned for every 100 vehicles)
Accidents per mile of roadway (assign 2 points per accident, per mile of roadway within the past 3 years of accident history)
The need to set priorities is extremely important since the placement of all Traffic Calming measures will be dependant upon the yearly funds allotted in the budget process. Therefore setting priorities using the numerical value system will insure that areas with the greatest need are considered first.
VI. NOTIFICATION OF RESULTS
The petitioner is notified of the results of the Traffic Study. If Traffic Calming is warranted, a public meeting will be scheduled to present the designed Traffic Calming Plan. At that meeting, the petitioner will be given a copy of the plan and a “Petition for Traffic Calming” to begin circulating.
The petition must be signed and filled out by
. A minimum of 65% of the property owners within the affected area must sign the petition in favor of the traffic calming measures proposed.
PETITION FOR TRAFFIC CALMING
The Petition for Traffic Calming will be given the petitioner for circulation. The petition must be returned to the Traffic Engineering Division within 45 days of the public meeting.
During this 45 day time frame the citizens will have the opportunity to request, in writing, changes and or additions / deletions to the proposed Traffic Calming Plan. If the changes can be accommodated and still accomplish the goal of Traffic Calming the City Staff will consider the requested changes.
VIII. FAILURE OF A PETITION
Should the Petition for “ Traffic Calming” fail by not getting the required 65% of the property owners to sign the petition, the request is considered closed. City Staff will not consider a new request no sooner than 12 months from the time of closure.
IX. REMOVAL OF TRAFFIC CALMING MEASURES
Once permanent Traffic Calming measures are approved by the residents and installed by the City, they will not be removed for any reason until they remain installed for a period of not less than 12 months, unless circumstances dictate or it becomes in the best interest of the City. Should citizens wish to have Traffic Calming measures removed from a street after they have been in place for 12 months, a “Petition to Remove a Traffic Calming Measure” must be presented to the Traffic Engineering Division. The “Petition for Removal of a Traffic Calming Measure” must contain signatures from a minimum of 65% of the property owners in the affected area. The affected is defined as the same area required for installation of traffic calming measures.
- The funding is limited and established each budget year by the action of the Council of Columbus. If funding is not available the project may be rejected or placed on hold until such time as funding becomes available.
XI. OTHER CITY DEPARTMENTS
- Public Safety and Public Services Departments will provide input into design of any Structural Traffic Calming Device. Structural Traffic Calming Devices will require funding approval by City Council.