Transcript of "Walking in College Station – Development Standards and Safety"
Walking in College Station – Development Standards and Safety City Council August 9, 2012
Objectives of Presentation ●City Policies Regarding Walking ●Benefits of Providing Facilities for Safe Walking ●Current City Development Standards Related to Providing Safe Facilities for Walking ●Proposed Reduction of Standards Presented by the Bryan-College Station Home Builders Association ●RecommendationsWalking in College Station
In a survey of College Station residents conducted in 2012, the provision of places for residents to walk and bike safely ranked behind only public safety, street maintenance, and economic development in importance This same survey indicated a citizen preference to continue to place the same or greater emphasis on providing places to safely walk or bike in the communityCity of College StationPolicies on Walking
College Station Comprehensive Plan● Developed through the work of thousands of residents over a multi-year process established the following mobility goal: Improved mobility through a safe, efficient, and well-connected multi-modal transportation system designed to be sensitive to the surrounding land uses.● The Plan further provides the following strategy and specific actions: Promote and invest in alternative transportation options Amend and implement the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan
City Council – Strategic Plan In 2012, the Council adopted its amended Strategic Plan and included the following related to mobility: The City will work to improve mobility by: • Providing streets that accommodate vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians • Ensure streets have features that promote walkability
College Station Bicycle, Pedestrian, and Greenways Master Plan Recognized as one of the best such plans in the State of Texas, established the following goals: Improve Connectivity and Accessibility Increase Safety Increase Bicycling and Walking Outdoors
College StationNeighborhood Plans Identified the need for greater connectivity and more sidewalks as top priorities. Proposals to expend thousands of dollars on retrofitting existing streets to add sidewalks
The City of College Station has… 130 miles of sidewalks 300 miles of streets More than half of the street miles within College Station are without sidewalksBenefits ofBeing Able to Walk Safely
What’s the Risk? In the U.S. between 2000 and 2009.. more than 47,000 pedestrians were killed more than 688,000 were injured Pedestrian injury is the 3rd leading cause of death by unintentional injury for children 15 and younger in the U.S. Nationwide, older pedestrians represent nearly 22% of total pedestrian fatalities while representing only 13% of the nation’s population Walking can be dangerous …especially so for the young and the elderly
National Standards American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) - “Guide for the Planning, Design, and Operation of Pedestrian Facilities”: “Where sidewalks are provided on only one side of a roadway, the overall connectivity of the sidewalk is weakened, as well as pedestrian safety and accessibility” “Sidewalks on only one side of the street are not generally recommended” The manual identifies only two instances where sidewalks on only one side a street may be justified – when only one side of the street is developed or on an interim basis – such as when previously no sidewalks existed at all.
National Standards The Institute of Transportation Engineers - “Recommended Guidelines for Sidewalk Installation” Recommends sidewalks be required on both sides of all streets in suburban and urban developments The Federal Highway Administration – “Designing Sidewalks and Trails for Access: Best Practices and Design Guide” Recommends a minimum width of five feet for all sidewalks
Bryan/College Station Design Standards Sidewalks located… Back of curb (on thoroughfares) be at least 8’ in width (unless in Northgate where greater is required) Sidewalks not located on back of curb be at least 6’ in width on thoroughfares (at least 3’ off of curb) On local/residential streets be at least 5’ in width (at least 3’ off of curb)Current Development Standards
The local HBA has requested:● Sidewalks… Only be required on one side of local/residential streets Not be required around the bulb of the cul- de-sac unless there is a facility to connect to Not be required to exceed 5’ in width along thoroughfares Not be required to exceed 4’ in width along local/residential streetsHome Builders AssociationProposal
Staff, BPG Advisory Board, and Planning & Zoning Commission are recommending: Sidewalks… Remain required on both sides of all streets, except where currently exempt Not be required around the bulb of the cul-de-sac unless there is a facility to connect to Along thoroughfares (except in Northgate) be allowed to be reduced to 5’ if not on the back of the curb and if adjacent to an existing striped bike lane Along local/residential streets remain at least 5’ in width No longer be required adjacent to expressways/freeways (though multi-use paths identified in BPG Plan will still be required)Staff Recommendations