Taylor Road Redesign Discussion
Taylor Road is a majorly used traffic corridor in Columbus, but many people are guilty of barreling through it at unsafe speeds. To help bring people together for a discussion about the most important changes to be made, Mark Fenton was brought in. Mark is a planning and transportation consultant who makes an effort to improve the safety and usability in projects he is asked to contribute to. On June 28th, he visited Columbus for the second time this year to facilitate discussion with the people who live on Taylor Road. He addressed their concerns while educating them on some possible redesign solutions.
More about Mark Fenton can be found here.
For the most part, people spoke up about their driveway space and parking as well as their yard space being intruded upon. The design proposals take everything that was said into consideration. The people were asked to identify any specific problem areas they foresee on a large map of Taylor Road: large trees, blind corners, etc.
The room was a little tense, but everyone was learning: those who live on Taylor Road learned about some innovative traffic calming techniques while Mark and the city of Columbus learned what some of their greatest concerns were.
Some of the new vocabulary that was shared with the group is defined below.
Traffic calming - design techniques to improve safety for motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists with the goal of encouraging safer, more responsible driving and potentially reduced traffic flow
Mini roundabout – a type of intersection that is small in diameter and offers the same benefits as a regular roundabout that produces traffic calming effects
Traffic Circle - a type of intersection that directs both turning and through traffic onto a one-way circular roadway, usually built for the purposes of traffic calming or aesthetics
Curb pop-outs - extending a sidewalk all forward into the street so that pedestrians can see traffic, but from the safety of the sidewalk; often, curbs are pushed forward if parking is available nearby (ex- downtown Columbus)
Refuge Islands - a small section of pavement or sidewalk, completely surrounded by asphalt or other road materials, where pedestrians can stop before finishing crossing a road
Median Islands - the reserved area that separates opposing lanes of traffic on divided roadways