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Author Topic: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan  (Read 962 times)

Avalanchez71

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US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« on: May 31, 2022, 11:14:02 PM »

Per the Warren County-Bowling Green Metropolitan Planning Organization

The section of US 31W Bypass from the roundabout at University Drive to Lehman Avenue may see a road diet come to fruition in the next few years. A study conducted by the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) with work completed by consulting firm, Strand Associates, analyzed the feasibility of a road diet on this section of the Bypass. The US 31W Bypass was built in the late 1940s as a narrow four-lane corridor located on the edge of the urban boundary at that time. Overtime the Bypass has become a heavily developed commercial corridor with a high density of entrances and approaches, and the current roadway exhibits very poor access control. The number of entrances and approaches generate frequent left-turn movements from the interior through lane, which reduces roadway capacity and increases crashes. Furthermore, the high frequency of access points creates additional safety concerns for bicycles and pedestrians along the route. To that end, the MPO and partnering agencies seek to improve safety and mobility for all roadway users along the Bypass corridor.

 

A road diet uses a roadway’s existing pavement footprint to restripe or reconfigure its travel lanes. In the instance of the Bypass, it is proposed to take the four travel lanes down to three – with one travel lane in each direction and one two-way left turn lane. This is a cost-effective solution to improve safety and mobility for all users.

https://www.warrenpc.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/2020-BG-WC-MPO.US31W-Final-Report-Only.pdf
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hbelkins

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2022, 02:20:45 PM »

Been a long time since I've been on that stretch of road, but this can't hurt. Cars waiting to turn left out of the left lane jam things up in places without dedicated turn lanes. The road diet for US 127 through downtown Harrodsburg definitely helped.
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seicer

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2022, 02:36:06 PM »

That's probably a great thing considering the high number of accidents. It has a limited right-of-way width and it's in a fairly built-up corridor with no room for expansion, and other portions of US 31W (to the south) are already three lanes. If there are any traffic concerns, they can use the US 68//US 231 bypass to the north and west.

A similar "diet" should be considered for US 60 east of downtown Frankfort which has a similar setup - four lanes with no turn lanes, a high number of conflicting intersections and driveways, and a higher than usual number of accidents.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2022, 02:39:08 PM by seicer »
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hbelkins

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2022, 05:09:28 PM »

A similar "diet" should be considered for US 60 east of downtown Frankfort which has a similar setup - four lanes with no turn lanes, a high number of conflicting intersections and driveways, and a higher than usual number of accidents.

I would agree, and I seem to remember some undivided four-lane segments of US 42 and US 60 east of downtown Louisville that could also benefit from a road diet.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2022, 07:29:47 PM »

What was the routing of US 31W prior to the US 31W By-Pass?  I can't remember when the through route was decommissioned and the By-Pass became the through route.  Could they divert some of the traffic and boost tourism to the downtown area now that downtowns are being revitalized?  Say run US 31W along the old route, US 31W Truck along the current route and maybe a US 31W ALT along US 231 BUS to US 68?
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seicer

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2022, 10:38:45 PM »

Perhaps. The presence of the university near downtown and a population boom has led to a lot of new urbanized developments in recent years - which is now starting to creep along the original bypass. I remember seeing renderings of

Avalanchez71

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2022, 10:55:25 PM »

The original bypass has had a lot of creep since the 70s. 

Per the Bowling Green Daily News

All that changed in 1947, when leaders decided they needed a bypass. U.S. 31-W By-Pass opened with two wide lanes and on-street parking.

In one of his road presentations Moore said that at the time, the bypass was perceived as being overdesigned.

Bowling Green historian Ray Buckberry has an early 1950s aerial photograph of the road, which showed mostly open land nearby with a few businesses, including a Houchens store.

Again, all that changed in the early 1970s, when commercial development came and what was then a four-lane road approached its capacity, Moore said.

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wriddle082

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2022, 11:25:41 PM »

A similar "diet" should be considered for US 60 east of downtown Frankfort which has a similar setup - four lanes with no turn lanes, a high number of conflicting intersections and driveways, and a higher than usual number of accidents.

I would agree, and I seem to remember some undivided four-lane segments of US 42 and US 60 east of downtown Louisville that could also benefit from a road diet.

I would also think US 60 (13th Street) in Ashland could use it as well, but unfortunately there’s just too much traffic so I think a CLTL would be a better solution.  Unfortunately I think the residential areas from roughly Rose Hill Cemetery to ACTC (near where I grew up) would be very difficult to add that fifth lane, plus some of the curves near Blackburn Ave (KY 168) are tight as it is.  So I highly doubt any improvements to accommodate left turns will ever happen unless they actually make progress on the proposed “Ashland Urban Penetrator” that I’ve seen mentioned in KYTC STIPs in the past.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2022, 11:45:28 PM »

So HB Elkins how receptive is the KY Transportation Cabinet about implementing these type of plans from the MPOs?
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hbelkins

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2022, 01:43:06 PM »

So HB Elkins how receptive is the KY Transportation Cabinet about implementing these type of plans from the MPOs?

They'll listen, especially if there are safety issues or if some CMAQ funding is available.

MPOs and ADDs get a significant amount of influence in projects via the SHIFT program for evaluating and ranking proposals.
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Avalanchez71

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2022, 07:08:01 PM »

So HB Elkins how receptive is the KY Transportation Cabinet about implementing these type of plans from the MPOs?

They'll listen, especially if there are safety issues or if some CMAQ funding is available.

MPOs and ADDs get a significant amount of influence in projects via the SHIFT program for evaluating and ranking proposals.
Do you know what the US 31X route looked like when it was still around?  For that matter the original US 31 through Bowling Green?
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seicer

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2022, 07:14:50 PM »

You can see how it developed in the aerials and topos posted at Historic Aerials. Here is one from 1955 that shows the proposed routing for US 31W - which really was about as crummy of a bypass alignment as any as it cut right through an existing neighborhood: https://historicaerials.com/location/36.98828778793902/-86.43551430092073/T1955/14

What surprised me was how late the state was to building a four-lane US 31W/US 68/KY 80 across the Barren River.

Avalanchez71

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Re: US 31W Bowling Green Road Diet Plan
« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2022, 08:05:53 PM »

You can see how it developed in the aerials and topos posted at Historic Aerials. Here is one from 1955 that shows the proposed routing for US 31W - which really was about as crummy of a bypass alignment as any as it cut right through an existing neighborhood: https://historicaerials.com/location/36.98828778793902/-86.43551430092073/T1955/14

What surprised me was how late the state was to building a four-lane US 31W/US 68/KY 80 across the Barren River.

If you notice the picture above you can see that Bypass US 231 was routed along part of this by-pass.  That section of Bypass US 231 is now BUS US 231 and the old Business route is now a city street.
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