(Photo: Phil Sweetnam and the Stittsville Village Association supported roundabouts for at least some of the intersections on Carp Road. He told StittsvilleCentral.ca earlier this summer that roundabouts work well in other communities, and would work well along Carp Road as well.)
At next Wednesday’s Transportation Committee meeting at City Hall, staff will recommend traffic lights instead of roundabouts along Carp Road.
The roadway between Hazeldean and the Queensway is scheduled to be rebuilt, with construction completed between 2020-2025 at a cost of $18-million in 2015 dollars. The city had been gathering input from the public for the last year and a half or so.
Staff considered a number of alternatives for the corridor, including traffic lights at three intersections (Westbrook, Rothbourne, Echowoods/Kittiwake), roundabouts at all three intersections, or a combination.
In the end, they found all the alternatives would have roughly an equal potential to improve traffic flow, but that most of the businesses and residents on Carp Road preferred traffic lights, and it would cost to much to acquire additional land to accommodate the traffic circles.
Councillor Scott Moffatt supports, the plan, but Councillor Shad Qadri wanted at least two of the intersections built as traffic circles.
The report quotes Qadri: “The City has highlighted the benefits of roundabouts and is incorporating them throughout the City. Carp Road would benefit from the continuous movement of traffic at all hours of the day and roundabouts require less maintenance, can operate during power outages and eliminate requests for turning signals… It is important that all users of the road are considered and not only the businesses located on the road.”
Here’s more from the report:
The study examined two categories of design alternatives at crossing streets: roundabout and signalized intersections. Both alternatives have the potential to improve the traffic and mobility environment. However, a majority of stakeholders with homes or businesses adjacent to the road expressed strong opposition to the roundabout design due to its impact on properties and the raised median which would prohibit convenient access to properties at mid-block locations. Therefore, at the third open house (June 2014), a draft Recommended Plan (also referred to in the report as Alternative A) for the project was presented which included a four-lane widening, a central two-way left-turn lane, and signalized intersections along the corridor.
Subsequently, the Stittsville Village Association and residents mostly from the area outside the widening limits of Carp Road provided feedback indicating a preference for roundabouts along the corridor. As a result, an Alternative B plan was established which included a central two-way left-turn lane at intermittent locations and roundabouts at Rothbourne Road and Kittiwake Drive/Echowoods Avenue. Both alternatives were presented to the study stakeholders in an additional round of consultation that was arranged in May and June 2015. The stakeholders appear to be divided on the roundabout design at Kittiwake Drive and Rothbourne Road. Generally, those who have properties and businesses within the widening limits of Carp Road support the signalized intersection proposal.
While the roundabout option has some advantages, its footprint is comparatively much larger than the signalized intersection option. This would mean a much greater impact on adjacent properties including the effects on the function of some lots, the potential impact on private on-site waste water systems at some locations, and a less direct crossing for cyclists. Furthermore, the cost of the roundabout option did not fit into the affordability envelope identified in the TMP for this project. Therefore, based on the evaluation results (Document 1, Table 1), public feedback, and consideration for project affordability, the study team recommends signalized intersections as the preferred design, thus providing the basis for developing the recommended plan for the project.
WHAT DO YOU THINK? Traffic lights or traffic circles? Tell us which one you prefer and why. Add your comments below or email firstname.lastname@example.org