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Converting Two Way Streets to One Way Streets

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Reviewed Date: June 19, 2017

Original Author: 
Rollins, Sharon
Date Created: 
Mar 19, 2007


Subjects:
Streets
Traffic

Converting Two Way Streets to One Way Streets

Summary: 
MTAS was asked to evaluate city streets for conversion from two way to one way and to provide guidance on traffic flow, signage, and parking.

Knowledgebase-Converting Two Way Streets to One Way StreetsMarch 19, 2007


Honorable Herbert Hood
160 Main Street
P.O. Box 640
Copperhill, TN 37317


Dear Mayor Hood:

I enjoyed meeting and working with you recently. You asked me to provide guidance on traffic patterns for two city streets. You are considering converting Prospect Street to one-way uphill and Hendrix Street to one-way downhill. The reasons are:

· These streets are very narrow (21 to 21.5 feet).
· There are no shoulders; the streets extend to the sidewalk or property line.
· Many residences along these streets do not have driveways so residents have to park their vehicles on the street.
· Effectively, there is only one lane for travel under current conditions.
· Currently residents park on both sides of these streets.
· At certain times, large trucks and emergency vehicles have difficulty getting through these streets.

After reviewing and measuring streets widths with you on March 8, 2007 and observing parking and traffic, I agree that these streets should be converted to one-way for safety reasons and to promote access for emergency vehicles. I recommend that Prospect Street should be one-way uphill beginning at Main Street, continuing past the intersection of Prospect and Cherry, and continuing to the intersection of Prospect/McCay/Hendrix. From thence, Hendrix should be one-way from its intersection with Prospect and McCay Streets and terminating at Main Street.

On both streets – Prospect and Hendrix - parking should be allowed only on the left side of the street so as not to obstruct right hand turns onto Cherry Street. The minimum clearance between the traveling lane and a parked vehicle should be 2.5 feet. The desired clearance is six feet. Cherry Street, which lies between Prospect and Hendrix Streets, will continue to be a two-way street. Please see the attached map for the recommended traffic flow and signage markups.
As we discussed during my visit, whenever traffic patterns change, there may be some initial confusion and even an increase in accidents until users become accustomed to the new traffic flow. For those reasons, it is extremely important that (1) the public be alerted to the proposed changes by newspaper notices, by written notices, town hall meetings, personal visits, etc. and (2) that intersections and parking zones be clearly marked with appropriate signage. I am enclosing excerpts from the Federal Highway Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) that indicates the proper signage for one-way streets and no parking zones.

Another topic that we discussed during my visit was the necessity of keeping pavement edges cleared of overgrowth. Clearing such overgrowth will promote drainage as well as effectively increase the width of usable roadway surface.

If you have any questions or need further information about the proposed street changes, please call me at (423) 282-0416.

Sincerely,

Sharon L. Rollins, P.E.
Manager of Technical Consulting


Attachment(s):

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MTAS letters and publications were written based upon the law at the time and/or a specific sets of facts. The laws referenced in the letters and publications may have changed and/or the technical advice provided may not be applicable to your city or circumstances. Always consult with your city attorney or an MTAS consultant before taking any action based on information contained in this database.