Stop EXCESSIVE TRAFFIC from being funneled into Lakewood. Demand a better design for "3G'!
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The current proposed plan that was drafted by TxDOT and the City of Dallas is set to move forward in the planning phase if we do not garner enough signatures and formal comments by February 2, 2018. We need you to act now! The current proposal that is strongly favored by both the city and the state is flawed and truly affects our East Dallas neighborhood, in ways that will be felt by far more than just the residents and business owners on Gaston Avenue. Any increase in traffic on Gaston Avenue divides our neighborhood in half, discourages pedestrians from walking to our local businesses, and prevents our families from safety walking and driving through our neighborhoods.
The current proposal (provided in the link below as Image A) is being referred to as a the "Reverse T Grand Avenue intersects Gaston/Garland Proposal" and truly directs drivers to continue onto Gaston Avenue from Highway 78 (Garland Road/Grand Ave). The primary flaw with this proposal is that it encourages the main flow of commuter and commercial truck traffic to be pushed into a highly residential area (Gaston Avenue), rather than continuing on Highway 78 towards IH30. The currently proposed plan essentially requires drivers to actively "turn left" to remain on the state highway. We propose that the city and TxDOT move to redesign this intersection "To a T" (provided in the link below as Image B); where drivers have to stop at a traffic light and actively decide to turn onto Gaston Avenue from Highway 78 (Garland Road/Grand Ave). Please refer to the links provided below for images of the two plans. Please also find further, in-depth information below.
In order to affect the most change please sign this petition, AND print and mail the "Meeting Comment Form", to be post marked by February 2, 2018. (We have provided links to download either a blank or completed form or your convenience).
LINKS TO PLAN IMAGES AND COMMENT FORMS:
ADDITIONAL AND PERTINENT INFORMATION:
A BETTER WAY - MORE ABOUT OUR PROPOSED “T” INTERSECTION DESIGN SOLUTION:
As illustrated in the plan diagram (provided in the link above as Image B), this intersection should be designed “to a T” intersection with a straight alignment for State Highway 78 (Garland Road/East Grand Ave) and a simple right turn lane onto Gaston Ave. This “T” intersection is a variation on one of TxDOT’s own previous design alternatives that we encourage them to return to for design direction. A “T” design would:
-Straighten SH 78 to make it easily navigable for commuters driving Downtown and beyond to reach IH30 (a more appropriate thoroughfare) and discourage the use of Gaston Ave by those who simply pass through our neighborhoods for Downtown destinations at high speeds.
-Provide traffic lights and create a right turn lane onto Gaston to allow local traffic to easily navigate the intersection and reach local residences and businesses.
-Eliminate wide-radius turns in favor of a standard right turn lane to reduce confusion, reduce speeds, and increase predictability for all users.
-Decrease traffic on Gaston Ave and promote safety for our residents.
-Decrease crosswalk lengths, making them safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
-Create a confusion-free intersection that conforms to existing Dallas Plan documents including the Thoroughfare Plan, Complete Streets, and the Garland Road Initiative.
-Design for lower speeds at the intersection and on Gaston Ave.
-Allow for easier entry and exit from the surrounding businesses and residences, both for cars and pedestrians.
-Reduce paving and flooding and increase permeable surfaces for better stormwater management.
-Allow for future traffic calming initiatives along Gaston Ave. (once the traffic is funneled our way, there is no going back).
WHY THE CURRENT "REVERSE T GRAND AVENUE INTERSECTS GASTON/GARLAND" PLAN IS FLAWED:
The proposed intersection plan (provided in the link above as Image A) was designed with a flawed assumption – that SH 78 and Gaston Ave are equal roadways – when in reality, Gaston Ave is a residential street densely lined with homes and driveways and not designed to handle the traffic demands of a state highway. The proposed design creates a wide right turn off of Garland Road onto Gaston Avenue, essentially making a right turn the dominant or new “straight” path and funneling traffic onto Gaston Ave. Those who wish to remain on the highway towards Grand Ave. are essentially forced to make a left turn to do so. The proposed design does not consider the impacts beyond the limits of the intersection and creates the following problems for our East Dallas neighborhoods:
-Encourages highway traffic, including commuters and large commercial trucks, through our neighborhood, increasing noise levels and decreasing the safety and navigability of our streets for our residents!
-Drastically reduces safety for the residents of Gaston Ave. – Children live on this street and are at risk every time they walk out their front doors or are driven out of their driveways. High speed traffic accidents are a regular occurrence and entering and existing driveways has become increasingly dangerous in recent years.
-Precludes future traffic calming and pedestrian access initiatives for Gaston Ave by increasing traffic volumes to a point of no return and making it dangerous for pedestrians and drivers throughout the neighborhood to reach our local businesses and restaurants. Even if better pedestrian crossing were built, walking or biking to Whole Foods and Lakewood Shopping Center would be dangerous due to the increased traffic volume. There is still hope, but this is the first step!
-Makes the intersection confusing for those who do not use it regularly, such as visitors to White Rock Lake and the Arboretum. By making Gaston Ave. the dominant path, over Grand Ave., we are unnecessarily increasing traffic through our neighborhood and possibly creating a situation where non-residents frequently utilize our home and business driveways to turn around and return to SH 78.
ACTION IS NEEDED NOW! Please sign this petition, AND print and mail the "Meeting Comment Form" provided through the links above, to be post marked by February 2, 2018.
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