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Group to Discuss Traffic Safety Issues at Rhode Island Avenue and Greenbelt Road

At tonight’s Berwyn District Civic Association (BDCA) meeting, the group will discuss the traffic safety issues at the intersection of Rhode Island Avenue and Greenbelt Road.

The meeting will be held at 8 p.m. at the Four Seasons Room at Holy Redeemer NOT at Fealy Hall as originally planned.

The issues on this road impact many groups: pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers. Residents all over our city use this roadway, as do parishioners going to and from Holy Redeemer Church and School, patrons and workers of the businesses along Berwyn Road, pedestrians and bicyclists connecting to the Trolley Trail, and others just passing through College Park. We need to attend this meeting to represent our concern and our desire for a smart solution. SHA has already proposed two solutions:

Restricting left turns and crossing the intersection, traveling south on Rhode Island into Berwyn. I believe this would involve a physical barrier.
Changing the one-way direction of the traffic on Rhode Island Avenue in Berwyn, so that you can no longer enter the community at this road (Exit-only)

These solutions will potentially resolve the issues for vehicles, but there are still many other unsafe conditions that pedestrians and bicyclists face. SHA has “studied” this area multiple times and have indicated that the bicycle and pedestrian volumes at this area do not warrant more substantial solutions, like flashing beacons or a planted medians… I believe that we should advocate that they design the space for the behavior we would like to promote as a neighborhood and as a city, which balances our existing auto-centric roads with more walkable and bike-able features.

The road should also be designed to be less of a dividing line between Berwyn and Branchville. A planted median could potentially create a more cohesive feel and also provide safe refuge for pedestrians. Baltimore Avenue will be reconstructed beginning in 2018 with sidewalk, bike lanes, and median dividers, so it only makes sense to continue the same design as people turn from Baltimore Avenue to Greenbelt Road

[Thanks to District 2 Councilmember PJ Brennan for sharing this information]

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1 Comment to “Group to Discuss Traffic Safety Issues at Rhode Island Avenue and Greenbelt Road”

  1. By Sam, November 21, 2015 @ 11:06 am

    I am sorry I missed this meeting. I am traveling for work.

    There is a well known phenomenon called “induced demand” – use increases when infrastructure is built. I believe we will see many more cyclists and pedestrians if the facilities are improved. The argument that low volumes do not justify improvements is inadequate.

    One particular issue for cyclists is that entering the trolley trail from the north is treacherous due to the narrow entryway and sharp turns required. Also, vehicles do not yield when crossing the bike lane to turn right on greenbelt road.

    I support creating a better bike/pedestrian connection from the trail to northbound Rhode Island, and I believe that doing so will increase bicycle and pedestrian traffic in this area.