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W. Franklin St. Lane Reallocation

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May, 2020 Update: Due to COVID-19 related funding issues, NC DOT has moved the planned resurfacing of W. Franklin St. to Summer 2021.

Background

The Town is continually seeking ways to improve Downtown's streets to be as welcoming and effective as possible. NCDOT will be resurfacing Franklin St. in summer 2021, providing an opportunity to implement a lane reallocation at a lower cost since they will do the pavement markings. The Town of Carrboro is also considering a lane reallocation for East Main St., which, if implemented, would provide an important connection.

What is a Lane Reallocation?

Lane reallocations are when vehicle lanes are repurposed for bike lanes, parking, loading zones, turn lanes or other amenities. They are relatively low cost ways to achieve safety, mobility, and access for all transportation modes. Many lane reallocation projects have resulted in significant increases in the number of pedestrians and bicyclists, more customers and higher sales revenue for local businesses, and decreases in speeding and crashes along the corridors.

Town staff have been considering W. Franklin St. for lane reallocation for a number of years, and it is a recommended project in the Mobility and Connectivity Plan.

Designs

Click here for the draft pavement marking plan (PMP) submitted to the Department of Transportation for consideration on April 27, 2020. DOT is currently reviewing these plans and will provide feedback to the Town in Summer 2020.  

Previous Designs:

Option A: Single direction buffered bike lanes on both sides of the street separated from vehicle traffic by a 3 foot buffer. Dedicated left turn lanes at Columbia St., Church St., Mallette St. and possibly Merritt Mill Rd. (pending more information). UPDATE: This plan is essentially what the Town submitted to DOT for consideration on April 1, 2020. The above pavement marking plan (PMP) support this general design.

Option B: This option presented at February and March input opportunities has been replaced with Option C below due to access and safety issues identified by Town staff.

Option C: Single direction buffered bike lanes on both sides of the street between Columbia St. and Mallette St. Bikes will then transition to a two-way cycle track on the south side of W. Franklin St. with a 2-phase left turn. The cycle track will be buffered by a 2-3 foot buffer as well as parked cars where applicable.

191023_Franklin_Merritt_intersection_002

For more information about this project, please email or call Sarah Poulton (spoulton@townofchapelhill.org or 919-969-5009).

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