Vail Town Council discusses ways to slow traffic on residential streets
October 4, 2017
Board: Vail Town Council.
Meeting: Tuesday, Oct. 3, afternoon session.
Present: Kevin Foley, Greg Moffet, Jenn Bruno, Kim Langmaid, Jen Mason, Dick Cleveland, Mayor Dave Chapin.
Issue: Options to slow down traffic in residential areas.
Who they talked to: Town Engineer Tom Kassmel, Police Chief Dwight Heninger.
What they talked about: Responding to complaints from residents about motorists driving too fast in residential areas, Kassmel investigated several options for ways to slow traffic.
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Options ranged from speed bumps to striping, curb construction and adding sidewalks.
Kassmel said speed bumps are among the most effective ways to slow traffic, but those bumps are relatively expensive and cause a rough ride for transit passengers and difficulty for snow-removal operations. Depending on the neighborhood, bumps might also be needed as frequently as every 225 feet.
The most cost-effective method seems to be highway striping similar to that in use in parts of Avon. Striping could narrow travel lanes, which tends to slow traffic. Kassmel estimated the cost could be between $3,000 and $5,000 per street, but lines would have to be repainted every year.
One trouble spot, at the intersection of Vail Valley Drive and South Frontage Road — also known as Blue Cow Chute — has its own problems. There, traffic from Vail Valley Drive to the frontage road doesn't stop, while frontage road motorists have to stop at the intersection.
The intersection creates a good deal of confusion, especially for visitors.
Kassmel said the most expensive option there would be a compact roundabout, with an estimated price of at least $6 million.
That's unlikely to happen.
What they did: This was an information session.
What's next? Council members said they want a plan to put into place in the summer of 2018.