The Traffic Calming for Local Residential Streets Program allows a county, in partnership with VDOT, to address speeding problems in residential neighborhoods on streets classified as local (certain collectors may also be eligible). In general, the county initiates and takes the lead role in coordinating the traffic calming process and VDOT staff provides technical support. Specifically, the Board of Supervisors forwards a resolution to VDOT that requests the initiation of a traffic calming project on a specific street along with support data showing that the street is eligible. The county, in cooperation with representatives from the petition area, impacted area, homeowner associations, the Board of Supervisors, local planning and transportation staff, police, fire, rescue, VDOT, and others as appropriate, then develops a traffic calming plan. Once the plan is jointly approved by VDOT and the county, it is implemented and later evaluated to determine the effectiveness of the measures employed.
The process consists of six basic steps: initial community meeting, resolution with support data from the county Board of Supervisors, development of a traffic calming plan, approval of the traffic calming plan by both VDOT and the county, implementation of the traffic calming plan, and evaluation of the traffic calming plan.
A number of methods to publicize and promote the traffic calming guide and the Residential Traffic Management Program may be used by the county and VDOT. One such method is an initial community meeting, which provides an opportunity for the county and VDOT to learn more about the concerns of the community as well as to help the community assess its traffic concerns. County staff arranges the meeting and determines its size and scope. All-inclusive participation (community leaders and residents, local politicians, law enforcement, fire, and emergency personnel, and county and VDOT staff) is essential for proper problem solving. Presentations made at the meeting should enhance the community's understanding about the traffic calming process, including the amount of community involvement required and the advantages and disadvantages of traffic calming. At this initial meeting, all participants can work together to develop a plan for continuous involvement by and communication with the community during the traffic calming process.
A street is eligible for a traffic calming measure if the following are met.
· The street is a two-lane road that has been functionally classified as a local residential street or as a collector street identified as having the characteristics of a local residential street.
· The posted speed limit does not exceed 25 mph.
· The average speed is at least 5 mph over the speed limit.
· A petition requesting traffic calming and signed by at least 75 % of the total occupied households within the petition area is obtained.
· The street provides direct access to abutting residences and serves only to provide mobility within the neighborhood, with traffic entering or exiting only from the residences.
· The street does not provide primary access to commercial or industrial sites.
· There is a minimum of 12 dwellings fronting the street per 1,000 feet of roadway, including both sides.
The Board of Supervisors initiates the traffic calming process by forwarding to VDOT a resolution that requests the initiation of a traffic calming project along with the following information (which verifies that the above eligibility criteria are met):
· Street functional classification
· Average daily traffic volumes
· Average speed
· Description of petition area
· Description of impacted areas
· Petition with signatures
The petition area includes residences on the proposed street section, and residences on all streets that have major access onto the proposed study street section. The county, in cooperation with VDOT, will define the petition area and provide a petition form. The impacted area typically includes the surrounding collector or arterial roads but should be defined by the county in cooperation with VDOT. The county should verify that the petition is valid.
The traffic calming plan should be developed by a group that includes representatives from the petition area, impacted area, homeowner associations, and the board of supervisors, local planning and transportation staff, police, fire, rescue, VDOT, and others as appropriate. The Board of Supervisors and homeowner associations are responsible for scheduling and facilitating meetings. VDOT staff should provide technical support and advise the community of the potential advantages and disadvantages of calming measures. Educating participants about residential traffic management and traffic calming is key to a successful program.
The proposed plan shall be presented to residents at a public meeting, or through some other method such as a petition, to inform and measure support for the plan. This should allow the Board of Supervisors to assess whether community support exists for the proposed measures.
The final plan and method of implementation must be jointly approved by the Board of Supervisors and VDOT. The final plan must identify the source of funding for implementation.
The traffic calming project is implemented according to the approved final plan.
A follow-up evaluation
should be performed to ensure that the traffic calming measures are effective.
The Board of Supervisors in cooperation with VDOT determines the method to
disseminate the findings and recommendations to those involved in the plan
development and obtain feedback as appropriate. If the county decides to remove
the traffic calming measures, then funding for removal should be from the same
funding sources as implementation. If an unforeseen safety problem develops,
VDOT may decide to remove the traffic calming measures.
Go to Attachment B
Return to executive summary