Tonight we learned that City Council will not be including City Transportation Manager Kathleen Krager’s lane reduction proposal on their July meeting agenda. In other words, we don’t need to persuade the Council to reject the proposal, because they aren’t even considering it in the first place! This is great news for the many residents against lane reduction in ONEN.
Before we found out the proposal is off the table, we prepared a note to give City Council outlining the reasons we’re against lane reduction as well as the many problematic statements Krager made during the June 16 Planning Commission meeting. If you’re interested, you can download a PDF of the full note here: ONEN Residents Oppose Lane Reduction. Below is the bullet point summary:
In early June 2016, City Transportation Manager Kathleen Krager announced a plan to narrow Cascade Avenue within Colorado College (CC). On June 16 the City’s Planning Commission rejected the proposal 6-2. We are asking City Council to do the same.
1. Cascade Avenue is not a pressing safety concern.
- Per CC pedestrian & vehicle counts, more than 3.8M pedestrians & 18M vehicles used Cascade from 2000-2012.
- CC cites only 15 pedestrian-vehicle accidents in that time; many involved minor injuries or no injuries at all.
- There were 1.25 pedestrian-vehicle collisions per year from 2000-2012; it has since decreased to 0.86 per year.
2. The minimal safety issues on Cascade aren’t solved by lane reduction.
- Lane reduction is supposed to prevent “hidden car” collisions: when the 1st car stops but the 2nd car fails to yield.
- Krager claims every collision she’s studied on Cascade was a hidden car collision.
- CC has described only one “hidden car” collision on Cascade from 2000-2012.
- Lane reduction doesn’t prevent collisions due to the 1st car or even the pedestrian failing to yield.
- Lane reduction doesn’t prevent the 66% of collisions involving people biking and skateboarding across the road.
3. A pedestrian underpass would resolve safety issues on Cascade.
- Krager predicts even after lane reduction pedestrians and vehicles will get “sloppy” and collide.
- An underpass completely decouples pedestrian and vehicular traffic, preventing all pedestrian-vehicle collisions.
- An underpass works with population increases, as evidenced by CSU and CU Boulder underpasses.
4. If safety were a dire concern, Krager would not dismiss the underpass.
- Krager implies pedestrian safety on Cascade is an urgent life or death issue.
- Yet she dismisses the underpass because it would change the “look and feel” of CC.
- Either safety is so urgent it justifies bypassing public feedback, or it’s so minimal CC’s “look and feel” are bigger priorities. Which is it?
5. Eliminating flashing light crosswalks is the middle ground.
- Nevada has more vehicular traffic but fewer pedestrian-vehicle collisions than Cascade.
- Nevada has fewer crosswalks and they all have signals. Cascade has multiple unsignaled crosswalks.
- Krager thinks flashing lights at the crosswalks make pedestrians overconfident and inattentive.
6. Krager offers no data to justify her proposal.
- Krager offers no studies or data on the effects of narrowing Cascade only.
- Krager admits repeatedly she can’t foresee what effects her proposal will have.
7. Federal studies don’t support Krager’s conclusions.
- The FHA report suggests lane reduction will increase traffic congestion.
- Krager says congestion and higher traffic volumes increase accident rates.
- The FHA reports that lane reduction does not decrease accident rates or accident severity.
- The FHA report is more comprehensive, accurate, and relevant than the CC analysis.
8. Most ONEN residents do not want Cascade narrowed
- Resident volunteers spent a lot of time collecting signatures against lane reduction: over 650 so far.
- Krager offers no equal metric of public opinion, only vaguely saying some ONEN residents support the proposal.
- When ONEN Board claimed ONEN supports lane reduction at the June 16 meeting, the room erupted in “boo’s.”
- The ONEN Board and Krager are ignoring public feedback. We do not want lane reduction.
For all the aforementioned reasons, we ask City Council to reject this nonsensical proposal in favor of data-driven solutions vetted through the proper process.
Please see our linked note for more detailed explanations as well as sources for all of our data.
Thank you for your consideration.