Update on the Coolidge Complete Streets project- Road Diet Pilot Program

Dear Berkley Residents,

We have reached the six-month threshold in the pilot project for Coolidge Road.  If you are not aware, one of Berkley’s main roadways, 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.

Some of these aspects were to increase parking in the downtown, walkability, and overall safety in the area. Over the course of two years, we will analyze the road design changes made over the one mile stretch of Coolidge Hwy. Throughout this study, the City continues to gather feedback from the public through conversations and emails to CoolidgeRoad@BerkleyMich.net.

Why Did We Make the Changes on Coolidge Road?
Prior to the study, baseline measurements were taken along Coolidge, as well as, neighborhood streets including; Kipling, Kenmore, Beverly, and Berkley to collect average daily traffic, peak hour traffic, and the speed of the vehicles traveling along these streets. As the sixth month of the pilot approached, we had Transportation Improvement Association (TIA) re-measure the same data, as well as, review any crash data from the corridor. 

Data Collection Process
Reliable data and community feedback are the basis of good decision making when it comes to City infrastructure improvements. There are several attributes that were measured for the Road Diet on Coolidge.

They include:

  • Number of cars that turn at Catalpa: TIA performs hand counts of turning movements from Coolidge onto Catalpa based on the potential implementation of a left turn signal at that intersection.
  • Amount of time it takes to travel the mile: Corridor drive time studies with TIA representatives driving in vehicles from Eleven Mile to Twelve Mile and vice versa at different points in the day. 
  • Timing on the traffic lights at signalized intersections: Timing of lights within the corridor is still being looked at by the Road Commission of Oakland County with recommendations from our traffic engineers.
  • Crash Types and Frequencies: We analyze how often there are crashes along Coolidge and the circumstances that lead to the accident.
  • Traffic Counts:  Using traffic counters stretched across the road, we count the number of vehicles that travel down Coolidge and side streets. Recently, the data collected along Coolidge, specifically the location south of Catalpa (refer to Spot B on the TIA Monitoring Map), was much lower in traffic count and in turning movement than the springtime count (even after accounting for seasonal variation). To be absolutely certain that this data is accurate, TIA will be recounting that area in the coming weeks following the completion of road repairs being performed by the City of Oak Park on Coolidge south of Eleven Mile Road. 
  • Feedback from neighboring communities:  TIA, our Public Safety Department, and the City Manager’s Office have been in contact with Huntington Woods regarding the northbound approach at 11 Mile. There are concerns with the increased level of vehicle backups and the potential for crashes. However, TIA has not observed these significant issues but is examining potential modifications to the transition north of the intersection that would be beneficial.

Next Steps 
We are planning two upcoming opportunities for Berkley residents to hear first-hand how the results are unfolding:

  • The first will be a public meeting which is currently scheduled for November 21, 2019, at 6:30 PM at City Hall in the City Council Chambers.  However, we may have to reschedule this date if we do not have the latest data in-hand.
  • We also plan to present the information to City Council on December 2, 2019, during their regular, televised meeting at 7:00 PM. 

Matthew Baumgarten

Click here to see the official press release.
Click here to see the TIA Monitoring Map. 

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