Steep Falls Road Safety Audit Notes

Road Safety Audit

 

Steep Falls – Route 11

 

Meeting Date: December 10th, 2015

 

Study Area: Route 11 beginning at the Limington town line and extending northerly to the intersection of Route 11 and Route 113.

Summary of Activities:

A public meeting to discuss safety concerns specifically relating to Route 11 in Steep Falls was held on the evening of December 10th, off site at the Boundary Road fire station. The meeting started with a short presentation by the MaineDOT. The presentation gave a brief overview of the observed speed data and crash history for the study area, as well as a history of actions taken on Route 11 to address safety concerns. After the presentation the meeting was opened to discussion. Below is a summary of the core safety issues identified by the participants of the safety audit.

Core Safety Issues

Excessive Speeds: The speed of traffic, especially heavy truck traffic, is a major safety concern for residents living in or near the study area. The southerly direction of travel (from Route 113 to Limington) was reported to be the direction of travel with the higher speeds.

Heavy Trucks: The presence of heavy trucks was repeatedly mentioned as a major safety concern. In addition to the speed of heavy trucks, many study area residents mentioned the shaking of homes as an issue.

Sidewalks: Several participants noted a lack of connectivity between the residential areas on Route 11 and points of interest such as Sweeties (local business) and the playground located on Mill Street. The newly built sidewalk on the north side of Route 11 ends at Gains Road, and then continues to Route 113 on the south side of Route 11. There are currently no pedestrian facilities (sidewalks, crosswalks) to get pedestrians from the Route 11 residential area to the north side of then Route 11 and 113 intersection or to the Mill Street playground.

Lighting: Several participants noted the lack of street lighting as a safety concern.

Drainage: A resident raised a drainage concern resulting from the construction of the sidewalk, stating that water from Route 11 will enter their driveway and surrounding property.

Recommendations on How to Address the Core Safety Issues

Traffic Calming Measures: Speed tables and an additional radar feedback sign for the southerly direction were two additional traffic calming measures mentioned during the discussion. Speed tables, while an effective tool to slow traffic, are not allowed on state routes due to concerns with emergency

vehicles and maintenance activities, as well as their impact to mobility. A request was also made to have the existing radar feedback sign collect speed data if the equipment is capable of doing so.

Prohibition of Heavy Trucks: An inquiry was made in to the possibility of prohibiting heavy trucks from using Route 11. The response to the inquiry was that the MaineDOT will not prohibit heavy trucks from traveling on any state or state aid route.

Law Enforcement: The request was made for additional law enforcement presence on Route 11 to address excessive speeds. A member of law enforcement present at the meeting stated that the availability of additional law enforcement is ultimately tied to funding.

Pedestrian Facilities: The recommendation was made to extend the sidewalk on the north side of Route 11 to the intersection with Route 113. The additional sidewalk would primarily accommodate pedestrians traveling to Sweeties, a popular local business.

Lighting: The town currently plans to install additional lighting in the area near the park which is located at the end of the study area at the intersection of Route 11 and Route 113. The request was made that additional lighting be installed along Route 11, extending to the bridge.

Short-term Action Items (<1 month)

Determine if the radar feedback sign located on the bridge can be set to collect data. (MaineDOT)

Review Route 113 to determine if an acceptable crosswalk location exists, preferably near Mill Street. (MaineDOT)

Review the drainage concern of a Route 11 resident. (Standish Public Works)

Intermediate to Long-term Action Items

Review need and funding availability for a second radar feedback sign for the southerly direction on Route 11. (MaineDOT/Standish)

Review need and funding availability to extend the sidewalk on Route 11. (Standish)

Review need and funding availability to add additional street lighting on Route 11. (Standish)