Coolidge Road Complete Streets Project
NOVEMBER 2022 UPDATE
The Coolidge Oversight Taskforce has finalized its recommendations for the Coolidge Road Complete Streets Project.
The Coolidge Hwy. Complete Streets initiative involved a 2-year evaluation period (due to the pandemic) to determine if re-striping Coolidge Highway between 11 Mile Rd. and 12 Mile Rd. from four lanes to three would improve traffic flow and make the road safer and friendlier for pedestrians and bicyclists. Coolidge Hwy. was restriped in the early summer of 2019 in order to improve many aspects of its function for all its users of the road with a primary focus on safety and functionality.
Other aspects were to increase parking downtown and walkability. Over the course of two years, the task force and administration analyzed the road design changes made over the one-mile stretch. The group would meet to review the collected data provided by the Transportation Improvement Association (TIA).
The committee met last month to discuss the final statistics and to formalize their report recommendation to keep the road diet on Coolidge with minor modifications.
City Council will review the Coolidge Oversight Taskforce’s recommendation at their next meeting on Monday, November 21 at 7 PM and decide on whether to approve or deny it.
The taskforce report offers an overview of the project, a summary of the data collected, and recommendations for the next steps regarding the project corridor. The taskforce does not recommend returning Coolidge to a four-lane highway with an intermittent turn lane and shallow parking bays. Instead, the report details four recommendations on the project elements that can be retained or improved upon:
- Keep the continuous turn lane due to its benefits to the flow of traffic and public safety vehicle movements. Likewise, the two travel lanes move efficiently and the corridor is able to handle the average daily traffic.
- Add perpendicular stripping and bump-outs to the parking lanes as protection to pedestrians and vehicles. The increased depth of these lanes was an improvement over the previous, shallow bays and adds greater comfort to parking in the central business district.
- Recognize that the design of the intersection at 11 Mile Rd and Coolidge was safer and more functional than the design used at the 12 Mile Rd intersection. As such, the taskforce requests that the City redesign the Twelve Mile intersection with a dedicated right turn lane and merge southbound traffic prior to the traffic signal. This can avoid near-miss accidents and the frustration of drivers who are asked to quickly merge between 12 Mile Rd and Beverly Blvd.
- The fourth and final recommendation relates to the addition of a bike lane on Coolidge. Long term, the taskforce recommends that the City consider incorporating these lanes with pedestrian areas based on European and Scandinavian designs. In the near term, while Berkley and adjoining communities continue to build out their bike network, the lanes do serve the dual purpose of serving cyclists and creating a comfortable buffer between those exiting parked vehicles and the flow of traffic.
Why Did We Make the Changes on Coolidge Road?
Prior to the study, baseline measurements were taken by TIA along Coolidge, as well as, neighborhood streets including; Kipling, Kenmore, Beverly, and Berkley to collect average daily traffic, peak hour traffic, the speed of the vehicles traveling along these streets, and reviewed any crash data from the corridor.
Berkley has received the latest results from TIA. TIA and the Coolidge Oversight Task Force Committee met on December 13, 2021, to look over the latest data collection on the Coolidge Highway Road Diet project.
As stated in previous updates, the City does not want to rush to make decisions based on depressed volumes from the pandemic. The primary goals of this portion of the pilot project focus on safety and functionality.
Documents were reviewed at the December 13, 2021 Meeting:
- Coolidge Hwy – 11-12 Mile Rd Volume Monitoring Nov 2021 (letter and ledger-sized include)
- Coolidge Hwy -11-12 Mile Rd Volume Monitoring Nov-Dec 2021 Chart
- Coolidge TT Summary LOS Comparison Nov 2021
- Nov 2021 Speeds for Berkley Monitoring Locations
- Speeds Summary Comparison, Nov 2021
- Summary Intersection LOS Delay Nov-Dec 2021
- Coolidge Intersections LOS Comparison, Nov-Dec 2021
What is the Coolidge Road Diet?
The Coolidge Highway Complete Streets Initiative involves a 24-month evaluation period to determine if re-striping Coolidge between 11 Mile and 12 Mile from four lanes to three will improve traffic flow and make the road safer and friendlier for pedestrians and bicyclists. Part of the study incorporates a 12-month review of the eight safety metrics that are part of the Coolidge Road Right-Sizing and Safety Corridor Metrics Matrix. The Berkley Downtown Development Authority is financing the project and can provide more details about the project can be found here.
Current Challenges to Drivers and Pedestrians with Coolidge
The current configuration of Coolidge between 11 Mile and 12 Mile was designed to allow vehicles to travel from one destination to another. Despite being built for the purpose it does not excel at it. Some of the potential problems with the Coolidge design include:
- Drivers in the interior lanes experience stop-and-go traffic movement while waiting for cars ahead of them to complete a left turn.
- Drivers attempting to reach a destination along the corridor find it difficult to make a left turn across two lanes of traffic.
- There were 80 accidents recorded between 2014 and 2016. Assuming just two vehicles per accident, that is 160 drivers in a short span. In 2017, there were an additional 37 crashes along Coolidge, 13 crashes South of Catalpa, and 24 crashes North of Catalpa.
- The design of the road creates blind spots for drivers and pedestrians, making new crosswalks difficult to install and causing pedestrians to walk a quarter-mile before crossing at an intersection. With limited crossings, pedestrians often attempt to cross all four lanes of traffic illegally and dangerously.
Wondering how the Coolidge Road Diet is being measured?
Click here to download the comprehensive metrics matrix that will be used to measure the project's success (updated 4/15/2021 to account for pandemic delays).
Click here to read how removing lanes from a busy street can actually make traffic better.
The Data Is In!
To view the six-month presentation on the Road Diet
Check out the latest six-month raw data report on the Complete Streets Initiative
We Want to Hear from You!
Got feedback on the Coolidge Road Diet? Send us your comments about the plan to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also download the Communications Strategy showing tactics that have been implemented.
Click here to read the comments that have been received as of August 12, 2019.
Multi-Community Bike Trail System
An important element of the Coolidge Highway Road Diet is the bike lanes which will run in both directions from 11 Mile to 12 Mile. These lanes are intended to become a part of a proposed multi-community bike system that includes Huntington Woods and Oak Park. Below you will find a map showing how the three communities plan to develop an integrated bike system, along with informative material on bike/driver safety.
Understanding Bike Lanes
Click here for "What Every Driver Should Know About Bike Lanes."
Click here to read "What Every Michigan Bicyclist Must Know."
Click here to read "What Every Young Michigan Bicyclist Must Know."
Need a quick refresher on the proper hand signals while you're biking in traffic?
Check out the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments graphic below. You can also learn more at www.walkbikedrivesafe.org.