Citizens Organized for Reasonable Routes Enhancing Community Traffic & Safety non- non-partisan, nonprofit, member-supported public interest organization that promotes Traffic and Safety issues by influencing public policy decisions: legislative, administrative, legal, and electoral. A community organization dedicated to providing a central place to review Park Ridge Traffic and Safety issues with its citizens and their elected Representatives and City's management. To practice and promote the responsible use of our roads, traffic systems and resources. To educate and enlist citizens to protect and restore the quality of our auto and pedestrian traffic as one of our cherished human environments in Park Ridge. CORRECTS - Citizens Organized for Reasonable Routes Enhancing Community Traffic & Safety believes that citizen's pedestrian safety, auto safety and reasonable routes comes first in city traffic. That before adding a traffic signal or traffic signals which generates slow traffic, bumper-to-bumper traffic, traffic gridlock, traffic complaints, traffic crashes, traffic signs, traffic bottleneck, automobile traffic, traffic congestion, rush hour traffic, bumper to bumper traffic, traffic congestion, rush hour traffic and automobile traffic, that a Park Ridge Alderman and/or Park Ridge Aldermen, should require a traffic study to avoid this auto traffic scenario in Park Ridge, Illinois. Only reasonable auto traffic should be permitted to provide reasonable routes with traffic safety and avoid traffic accidents, traffic injuries, pedestrian injuries, auto accidents, traffic problems, which will also decrease pedestrian traffic in Park Ridge and thus negatively affect retail sales and our quality of life. We encourage Park Ridge citizens to register and for all voters to vote only for a Park Ridge Alderman / Park Ridge Aldermen Park Ridge Mayor that promises to ensure Reasonable Routes and City Traffic Safety. Today’s Park Ridge City Policy of waiting for citizens to first be injured, maimed and dead, while creating a serious crisis of traffic congestion, in traffic routes and hurting existing retail businesses, is unacceptable. CORRECTS holds itself out as an Open Forum to provide an opportunity for citizens and organizations to inform the public of events, issues or projects. This will allow you to report anything you wish to see addressed or answered regarding traffic anywhere in Park Ridge. Your input on this issue if vital to all of us. Please review and advise us of what you think of the concepts and what you prefer. We need your input to inform and advise. Check out our Park Ridge Traffic and Safety series of forums and speak out.

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November 28, 2006 New Representatives Ratings

Subject: Civiltech Presents New Design Plan to City

Washington to Washington Reconnection Technical Design

This is a once in lifetime opportunity to prepare Uptown for the Redevelopment's dramatic increase in traffic, which is required for successful retail and living..

Not shown in the picture is a permanent left turn and right turn lane on Northbound Washington. Those who wish to turn left onto Touhy would do so from Washington's  Left Turn lane. This currently is done by some continuing on North West Highway because traffic is so choked there. This will permit a permanent No-Left Turn at N.W. Hwy. for all hours of operations.  Thus an unimpeded flow will smooth out trips for those visiting Uptown or crossing as pedestrians. Only this configuration will allow Park Ridge to replace the pedestrian crossing area with a streetlight for pedestrians and cars pulling in to shop when the new development at Six-Corners is built..

Click here for full Adobe Reader PDF details and drawings

Technical Memorandum

To: Mr. Joseph A. Saccomanno, P.E. Date: November 3, 2006
       City of Park Ridge
       Director of Public Works
From: Robert J. Andres, P.E., P.T.O.E.
           Joel E. Christell, P.E.

Re: Intersection of Washington Avenue at Northwest Highway

Redevelopment activities on the Executive Office Plaza site located between Touhy Avenue and Northwest Highway immediately east of Washington Avenue present a once in a lifetime opportunity to correct a long standing traffic problem at the intersection of Washington Avenue and Northwest Highway (see Exhibit A-t). This Technical Memorandum analyzes existing P.M. peak hour traffic operation at the intersection and explores the traffic capacity and operational benefits of realigning Washington Avenue to eliminate the offset between its north and south intersection legs at Northwest Highway. A concept plan for the realignment is also presented.

A. Existing Conditions

The City of Park Ridge does not have an adequate system of north-south arterial roadways.As a result, collector and local streets shoulder much of the burden of north-south arterial travel through the community. Traffic is concentrated on roadways that cross the railroad tracks or which have signalized intersections at major east-west arterial streets. Washington Avenue is one of the collector streets in the study area that is used for north-south mobility. Washington Avenue is a two-lane 30-foot wide roadway with on-street parking allowed on one side. Washington Avenue is signalized at its intersection with Northwest Highway; however, the north and south legs of Washington Avenue are offset by about 220 feet (see Exhibit A-2).

The traffic signal installation operates in a traffic-actuated mode which allows the cycle length to vary based on the needs of traffic, subject to maximum green phase settings. It is not interconnected with nearby traffic signals. The Washington Avenue offset requires an inefficient "split-phase" traffic signal sequence where the southbound and northbound Washington Avenue at Northwest Highway

Washington Avenue movements do not flow concurrently, but rather flow sequentially. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), which controls signal timings, favors traffic movements on Northwest Highway, and as a result provides Iimited green time to the Washington Avenue phases. Traffic on Northwest Highway flows relatively well, but the Washington Avenue approaches experience long backups in the P.M. peak hour. On the afternoon we observed traffic conditions in the study area, we noted southbound vehicle queues that extended from Northwest Highway to nearly Touhy Avenue, a distance of about 800 feet.

Exhibits A-3 and A-4 depict existing P.M. peak hour traffic volumes at the Washington Avenue/Northwest Highway intersection. Appendix B contains the results of a capacity analysis for the intersection. The intersection operates at an overall Level of Service of Level "D" with an average control delay per vehicle of 51 seconds. The Northwest Highway movements operate at Level of Service "B" (average delay of 16 sec./veh.), but southbound Washington Avenue operates at Level of Service "F" (average delay of 170 sec./veh.). The 95th percentile back-of-queue length for this movement was predicted to be 825 feet which matches field observations. The delays on Washington Avenue in the P.M. peak hour likely cause drivers to avoid it and use nearby parallel local streets to access or cross Northwest Highway.

B. Washington Avenue Realignment

Aligning the north and south legs of Washington Avenue at Northwest Highway will provide a significant improvement to intersection capacity by eliminating the need for split-phasing. This would allow more green time to be allocated to Washington Avenue, thereby reducing traffic backups, without penalizing the Northwest Highway traffic movements. Exhibit A-5 depicts reassigned P.M. peak hour traffic volumes at the Washington Avenue/Northwest Highway intersection if the north and south intersection legs are aligned. Appendix B contains the results of a capacity analysis for a realigned intersection. The realigned intersection would operate at a significantly higher overall Level of Service of Level "B" with an average control delay of 19 seconds per vehicle. This represents a 63% reduction in overall intersection control delay.

The Northwest Highway movements would stay at about the same Level of Service as exists today, operating at Level "B" (average delay of 18 sec./veh.). The southbound Washington Avenue movements, however, would improve dramatically compared to existing conditions. They would operate at Level of Service "B" with an average delay of 20 seconds per vehicle (down from 170 sec./veh.). The 95th percentile back-of-queue length for southbound Washington Avenue would be 75 feet (compared to 825 feet for the existing intersection).

C. Implementation of Washington Avenue Realignment

Implementation of the Washington Avenue realignment would require close coordination with redevelopment activities on the adjacent parcels within the Executive Office Plaza site. Since not all parcels are under a single ownership, implementing the realignment would have to occur in stages. The first stage would occur in concert with the Touhy/Washington Mixed-Use Development. That developer would be requested to dedicate land on the southwest corner of their parcel that would be occupied or cut off by the realignment, in lieu of contributing towards an improvement at this intersection. They would not be asked to contribute towards the construction cost of the realignment itself.

The second stage would depend upon how the remaining parcels are redeveloped. If a single developer redevelops both the Polish Women's Alliance Building and the George S. May parcel, then that developer would be requested to dedicate the remainder of the right-of-way and construct the realignment. The City would help to offset some developer costs by abandoning the unneeded portion of Washington Avenue and swapping the excess right-of way for the new right-of-way (please note that we have not investigated the feasibility of relocating utilities that exist within the existing right-of-way).

If the two southerly parcels redevelop separately, then the City may have to take the lead in implementing the realignment. The City could apply for funding through the Surface Transportation Program (STP) or the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) program to acquire the needed land and construct the improvement.

D. Conclusions and Recommendations

Based on the above, it is clear that realigning the Washington Avenue intersection legs will provide a dramatic reduction in traffic congestion at this intersection. The improvement will also likely attract traffic that presently diverts to nearby local streets during the peak hours back to Washington Avenue.

The City of Park Ridge should strive, if possible, to see that new developments contain reasonable features that enhance the operation of the surrounding street network, rather than just avoiding significant degradation. Toward that end, it is recommended that site planning for the Touhy/Washington Mixed-Use Development set aside the needed right-of way for a future realignment of Washington Avenue at Northwest Highway that would occur within its parcel. It is further recommended that future redevelopment efforts on the Executive Office Plaza site be required to incorporate the realignment in their site plan and implement the remainder of the realignment improvement.


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