Support for U.S. 15-501 Road Diet
This petition made change with 1,055 supporters!
We, the citizens of Durham, ask that City Council make the simple yet forward-thinking decision to approve the restriping of U.S. 15-501 Business. Such an action will improve the safety of motorists and allow for easy access to businesses along this corridor by both car and bike (links below). Multiple studies have shown that reducing traffic speeds leads to safer streets, increased profits for business owners, and higher land values. While we understand the concerns of current business owners, we ask that you see the future benefit of providing the citizens of Durham with a road that is safe, accessible for multiple road users, and makes this corridor of Durham more economically competitive.
Thank you for considering the concerns of Durham residents and thinking about the future of this roadway for all users.
In addition to signing this petition, we encourage you to come to City Council meeting on June 15th at 7pm at City Hall, 101 City Hall Plaza, and make a statement in support of this project. The City Council members will vote that evening. If you've never been to a City Concil meeting before, it's time! We recognize the meeting will most likely run long, but spending 5hrs to improve a roadway and potentially save lives of motorists and cyclists is a sacrifice we feel is worth making.
If you're just getting caught up on the proposed 15-501 road diet, here's what you need to know:
In early April, we learned that 15-501 was on the North Carolina Department of Transportation list for resurfacing. When a road is resurfaced, it also automatically gets restriped. Adding bike lanes to 15-501 is part of Durham's 2006 Comprehensive Bicycle Transportation Plan, but this hadn't been implemented yet for budget reasons. This is a chance to finally implement the Bicycle Plan, without cost to the city. ('Road diet’ planned for U.S. 15-501 Business in Durham).
By late May, the proposal to restripe 15-501 with bike lanes had the approval of the City Council. The reconfiguration be from the Chapel Hill Road bridge to its end at University Drive. Instead of five motor-vehicle lanes, there would be three – one each way with a left-turn lane in the middle – with bicycle lanes on either side and on-street parking. (15-501 ‘diet’ gets Durham council backing).
On June 1, the evening the City Council was supposed to vote on the reconfiguration, several business owners voiced their opposition to the bill. The council postponed the vote to June 15. (City Council delays final decision on 15-501, Durham council postpones vote on 15-501 ‘diet’).
More about the economic benefits of bike infrastructure:
- Smart Growth America | Complete Streets Stimulate the Local Economy
- Streetsblog | A Milwaukee Suburb Turns to Complete Streets to Spur Business
- Rethinking Streets | An Evidence-Based Guide to 25 Complete Street Transformations
- Streetsblog | The Debate About Bike Infrastructure Has Been Settled
- Seattle Transit Blog | Seattle Case Study: Economic Impacts of Bike Facilities
- Mayor's Innovation | Road Diets: A Livability Fact Sheet
- North Carolina DOT | Project Examples: East Boulevard Road Diet
Today: Bike Durham is counting on you
Bike Durham needs your help with “City of Durham City Council: Support for U.S. 15-501 Road Diet”. Join Bike Durham and 1,054 supporters today.