Big changes to traffic movement in the Old North End are coming soon.
Motorists, be aware that things will soon change in the Old North End under a new plan of "road dieting" in which four-lane streets will be converted to two lanes to accommodate bicycles and pedestrians, but still move traffic, according to the city.
The city announced in a Jan. 30 news release that changes are under way after a series of public meetings designed to delve into transportation and safety concerns. We wrote about the traffic concerns in April 2016
In general, the changes include reducing traffic speeds, reducing the number of vehicle lanes and creating bicycle lanes.
Speed limits for arterial streets will be cut from 35 mph to 30 mph on Nevada and Cascade avenues; Weber, Uintah, Wahsatch and Fontanero streets. The maximum on Wood Avenue and Tejon Street will be 25 mph, down from 30 mph. New signs will be posted soon, the city says.
"In addition to reducing the speed limits throughout the area, the City will continue to review engineering best practices that can be implemented to redesign the roadways to encourage motorists to drive the new speed limit, thereby increasing safety for all roadway users and better managing traffic flow," the release said.
Nevada's truck route will be removed in efforts to reduce noise and heavy trucks. Changing a truck route requires City Council approval, which is slated for this spring.
Uintah between Weber and Corona Street will see a center turn lane added sometime this summer to "improve thru-traffic flow and reduce congestion," the release said.
The city has installed "vertical delineators" to block illegal left turns onto Wood at Uintah.
To accommodate bicycles throughout the Old North End, these corridors will see changes:
• Cascade will be restriped with one through lane, a buffered bike lane, and parking in each direction between Boulder and Jackson streets this spring. Goal: Improve pedestrian safety and provide a bicycle link to downtown. The City is also plans to redesign the Cascade and Uintah intersection in summer 2019.
Colorado College will trim the number of crosswalks on Cascade from four with flashing lights to two standard crosswalks this spring.
"Reducing travel lanes to one in each direction will facility a safer crossing with less delay for drivers using standard crosswalks as opposed to replacing the flashing automated crosswalks with the pedestrian activated mid-intersection street lights required for streets with four travel lanes," the release said.
• Weber between Colorado Avenue and Jackson will be restriped to narrow four lanes on Weber to two and a center left turn lane, bike lanes and parking. The bike lane will be next to the vehicle lanes, unlike Weber south of Pikes Peak Avenue where bike lanes run parallel to the curb line. This change has no specific date.
• Fontanero between El Paso Street and Wood will be restriped to include two travel lanes, a center turn lane and bike lanes sometime in 2019.
In addition to all that, Mountain Metro Transit and city traffic engineering is reviewing routes and usage to see if modifications are necessary.