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West Maple Road Project

Receive electronic updates about West Maple Road by signing up for the West Maple Road Paving Project Constant Contact group at www.bit.ly/bhamnews. View Constant Contact messages regarding this project below:

W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 09-20-16  
W. Maple Road Paving Project Notice 09-15-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 09-12-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 09-09-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Notice 09-08-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Notice 09-07-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 09-02-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 09-01-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-31-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-24-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-19-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-16-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-05-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 08-02-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 07-25-16  
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 07-15-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 07-05-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 06-24-16 
W. Maple Road Paving Project Update 06-17-16 


W. Maple Rd. OPEN
We are pleased to announce W. Maple Road is reopened to traffic from Cranbrook to Southfield. While some minor work is still required to repair the sod along the rights-of-way, the road is now open to traffic. We hope you are pleased with the newly paved surface and appreciate your patience in waiting for this project to be completed. Please drive safely.

IMG_0377    IMG_6743

W. Maple Road to be CLOSED Aug. 3 - mid-September

Motorist should be warned that W. Maple Rd. will be closed in both directions for resurfacing between Cranbrook and Southfield Road starting Wednesday, August 3.

W. Maple Detour Route_updated
 
Through traffic will be asked to follow the posted detour route, which is directing traffic to Quarton Rd. via Lahser Rd. on the west, and Woodward Ave. on the east. Motorists are asked to respect the road closure for the sake of everyone's safety, as well as to facilitate a fast, efficient project. The project is expected to be completed by mid-September.
 

W. Maple Road Decision Made to Continue 3-Lane Configuration
The West Maple Road Trial has concluded, and a decision has been made to keep the 3-lane configura6.17.16 restriped Wmaple - Copytion on West Maple Road between Cranbrook and Southfield. The trial concludes after months of data have been gathered and presented, and a final data summary  was presented to the City Commission July 11, 2016. The data that was collected during three analysis periods included crash data, average daily traffic volumes, peak period traffic volumes, speed data, cut-through traffic, and travel time. The improvements on West Maple Road are part of the City's on-going infrastructure improvement program, and the next step is to complete the resurfacing and permanent restriping of West Maple Road.

W. Maple Rd. Resurfacing Planned for 2016
The City is moving forward with the complete resurfacing of W. Maple Rd. from Cranbrook to Southfield this summer. For the project schedule,
 go to West Maple Road Resurfacing Plans.

2016 Charter Amendment Ballot Proposal Fact Sheet
Birmingham residents will be asked to vote on a citizen initiated ballot proposal to amend the City of Birmingham Charter on March 8, 2016 in conjunction with the Presidential primary election. View the Ballot Proposal Fact Sheet.

View the interim results of the West Maple Road Trial: Interim Data Summary of 1.19.16.
The re-striping of West Maple Rd. began Saturday, October 3, 2015. See information below for further details regarding the trial. Download Frequently Asked Questions about the West Maple Road project.


Last year the City of Birmingham implemented a new process for reviewing its road improvements. This review process involved the creation of a new Multi-Modal Transportation Board to review mobility enhancements contained within its Multi-Modal Master Plan.

lane image cropped median removed

In 2016, as part of the City’s on-going infrastructure improvement program, West Maple Road is planned for a complete resurfacing from Cranbrook Road to Southfield Road. The City obtained a federal grant to cover the cost of this resurfacing project. The width of West Maple Road will not change.

To broaden the extent of public input on the West Maple Road project, the Multi-Modal Transportation Board established a special committee to study the road in greater detail.  This nine member committee, made up of various resident and commercial interests located in the immediate area, worked with the City’s traffic consultant. The committee identified current issues with the road, developed recommendations to address the issues, and presented their recommendations to the Multi-Modal Transportation Board in April of 2015. 

The common issues identified by the committee concerning West Maple Road that needed to be addressed included the following:

  • Concern that this section of W. Maple Road is dangerous and does not feel safe;
  • Concern about the excessive speed of traffic on W. Maple;
  • Concern about vehicles swerving to avoid other vehicles making turns along the corridor;
  • Concern about the difficulties of turning onto W. Maple from adjacent side streets;
  • Concern about traffic backups at Southfield Road;
  • Difficulty for pedestrians to cross W. Maple; and
  • Satisfaction with the sidewalk conditions along the W. Maple corridor.

Accordingly, the committee agreed that each of the above common areas of concern should translate into the following objectives for improvements considered for the W. Maple corridor:

  • The committee worked with the City’s engineering, planning and police departments as well as the City’s contracted traffic engineer to formulate a set of recommendations that could maintain current service levels for the road, while reducing speeds and accidents. These recommendations to the Multi-Modal Transportation Board were included in the following motion approved by the committee:Improve the safety of the corridor, especially for vehicular and pedestrian traffic;
  • Lower the speed of vehicular traffic in the corridor;
  • Reduce the amount of vehicles swerving to avoid cars making turns along the corridor;
  • Enhance the ease of vehicles to turn onto W. Maple from adjacent side streets;
  • Reduce traffic congestion in the vicinity of the Southfield Road intersection;
  • Provide safe and convenient pedestrian crossings along the corridor; and
  • Maintain sidewalk facilities in the corridor.

MOTION:
The Steering Committee recommends to the Multi-Modal Transportation Board that W. Maple Rd. between Cranbrook Rd. and Southfield Rd. be reconfigured as a three lane road containing two 10 ft. wide through traffic lanes, one 10 ft. continuous left turn lane, two 7 ft. wide shoulder areas without creating bike lanes, with the following additional conditions:

(i) A 6 month trial period to commence after the road is repaved with a formal study by the  City to consider the effects of the reconfiguration in the last month, with such results to be reviewed by the Steering Committee;
(ii) Installation of ADA ramps at all corners and crossings;
(iii) Crosswalk marking improvements to be made at the signalized intersections;
(iv) The addition of a right turn only lane for eastbound traffic turning south on Southfield Rd.;
(v) The addition of pedestrian refuge striped crossing islands to the east of Chesterfield Ave., east of Lakepark Dr., and west of the Rouge River bridge, the latter with Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons;
(vi) The removal of low use bus stops;
(vii) The enhancement of higher use bus stops (concrete pad, benches, shelters etc.); and
(viii) The addition of enhanced technology in the existing signals to control and optimize  signal cycle lengths and timing.

Upon study and review of the committee’s recommendation, the Multi-Modal Transportation Board modified their recommendation to the City Commission to slightly enlarge the travel lanes and reduce the buffer at the side of the road.  The following resolution was adopted by the Multi-Modal Transportation Board and presented to the City Commission:

Resolution directing staff to proceed with plan preparation for the W. Maple Rd. Resurfacing Project from Cranbrook Rd. to Southfield Rd., to include two 12 ft. wide through traffic lanes, one 12 ft. continuous left turn lane, and two 4 ft. wide shoulder areas without bike lanes. Further, adding the following additional conditions:

1. A 6 month trial period to commence after the road is repaved with a formal study by the City to consider the effects of the reconfiguration. The W. Maple Rd. Steering Committee will reconvene in April, 2017, to study the following measures, compared to the conditions that existed prior to the project, including:

a. Average speeds;
b. Average daily traffic;
c. Crash rates;
d. Cut through traffic during the PM Peak Hour on the following roads: S.
    Glenhurst Ave., Larchlea Dr., Chesterfield Ave., Pleasant Ave., Pilgrim
    Ave., Arlington Rd., Shirley Rd., and Lakepark Dr.; and
e. Level of Service at the Southfield Rd. and Chester St. intersections.
The Steering Committee will also actively solicit public input from all interested stakeholders as a part of the process, and make a recommendation for the future of the corridor to the Multi-Modal Transportation Board.
2. Installation of ADA ramps at all corners and crossings;
3. Crosswalk marking improvements to be made at the signalized intersections;
4. Congestion relief improvements between Southfield Rd. and Chester St. including a right turn lane for eastbound traffic at Southfield Rd. and dual left turn lanes between Southfield Rd. and Chester St.,
5. Installation of marked crosswalks at the Chesterfield Ave. and Lakepark Dr. traffic signals;
6. The removal of low use bus stops;
7. The enhancement of higher use bus stops (concrete pad, benches, shelters etc.);
8. The addition of enhanced technology in the existing signals to control and optimize signal cycle lengths and timing.


At the City Commission meeting of June 1, 2015, the City Commission considered the recommendation of the Multi-Modal Transportation Board, reviewed the data behind the recommendation and listened to public input before adopting the following actions from the recommendations presented. 

1.         To approve the installation of ADA ramps at all corners and crossings; the enhancement of higher use bus stops (concrete pad, benches, shelters etc.); and the addition of enhanced technology in the existing signals to control and optimize signal cycle lengths and timing. 

2.         To approve crosswalk marking improvements to be made at the signalized intersections; congestion relief improvements between Southfield Rd. and Chester St. including a right turn lane for eastbound traffic at Southfield Rd. and dual left turn lanes between Southfield Rd. and Chester St.; installation of marked crosswalks at the Chesterfield Ave. and Lakepark Dr. traffic signals; and the removal of low use bus stops. 

3.         To accept the Multi-Modal Transportation Board’s recommendation and direct a trial reconfiguration of West Maple Road as soon as possible to evaluate the resulting safety enhancements resulting from restriping the road from four to three lanes with a center turn lane, incorporating a right turn lane for eastbound traffic at Southfield and dual left turn lanes between Southfield and Chester. Further to study the following measures with conditions that existed prior to the reconfiguration including average speeds, average daily traffic crash rates, cut through traffic during the PM peak hour on South Glenhurst, Larchea, Chesterfield, Pleasant, Pilgrim, Arlington, Shirley, Baldwin, and Lakepark, and the Level of Service at the Southfield and Chester intersections, as well as at the three churches. 

Throughout the West Maple Road review process, the safety benefits to be gained from a 3 lane configuration were highlighted, including lowering average speeds, lowering speed differentials, reduction of accident rates and accident severity, the reduction of traffic conflict points, improved pedestrian crossings, and improved gaps in traffic for ease of turning onto W. Maple from the surrounding neighborhoods. To verify the safety benefits that may be gained for the W. Maple corridor with the 4 to 3 lane reconfiguration, the City has formulated a plan to ensure that data is obtained before the trial period begins to as accurately as possible measure the impact of the reconfiguration. Included in that plan are the following: 

  1. Once Oak Street is reconstructed and traffic patterns return to normal, traffic data of several types will be collected in late September 2015 to document the current level of service.
  2. In early October 2015, the existing pavement markings will be removed, and W. Maple Rd. will be restriped to three lanes.  As a part of the plan, no changes will be made in the area of Cranbrook Rd.  Changes between Southfield Rd. and Chester St. will provide more storage for left turns, potentially improving the current situation in that area. 

To effectively evaluate the proposed changes to the road during this trial period, the following test criteria have been established for this effort. The key areas being considered are average speeds, traffic volumes, cut through traffic, travel time comparisons, and accident data. 

Average Speeds:
Testing will begin approximately two weeks after Oak Street is re-opened (mid to late September 2015). The counts will be done on Maple near Chesterfield and on Maple near Baldwin, both eastbound and westbound. 

Traffic Volumes: The following locations will receive pre and post volume counts as part of this evaluation.
a. Oak Street
b. Quarton Road
c. Maple Road
d. Lincoln Road
e. Fourteen Mile Rd.

Cut Through Traffic:
Testing will or has already occurred for the following locations to assess if traffic counts have increased following the trial lane reconfiguration: 

a. Church traffic along Maple – Will be counted in the middle of September for turns during PM peak hours and on Sunday (10 AM –Noon). A traffic volume count will also be conducted for Sunday. Additionally, churches will be contacted for calendars, schedules or noted “busy” times in the middle of September and to determine which driveways are the busiest. 
b. Intersection at Maple and Southfield and Maple and Chester – Use existing data recently collected and re-count data for the three lane conversion in mid-December. 
c. South Glenhurst/Larchlea/Pleasant – Count all turning traffic (both into and out of the street) between Maple and Lincoln. This will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. Counts will occur in mid to late September. 
d. Chesterfield/Pilgrim – Count all turning traffic (both into and out of the street) between Maple and Quarton. This will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. Counts will occur in mid to late September. 
e. Baldwin – Count all turns into and out of the street. This will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. Counts will occur mid to late September. 
f. Arlington/Shirley - Count all turning traffic (both into and out of thestreets) between Maple and Lincoln. This will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. A second “phase” for Arlington/Shirley is to record license plates as a measure of cut through traffic for this area given the nature of the streets. This phase will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. Counts will occur mid to late September.
g. Lakepark - Count all turning traffic (both into and out of the streets) between Maple and Oak. This will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between the hours of 4 and 6 PM. Counts will occur mid to late September.

 
Travel Time Comparison:
During the morning, afternoon and evening peak traffic periods of a typical weekday, the City’s traffic consultant will conduct five travel time runs in each direction on Maple Road. The travel time data will be collected and analyzed consistent with accepted engineering practice. To be consistent, this will be conducted on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. The survey will take place after Labor Day and be compared to Level of Service data collected in the future.

Accident Data:
Although traffic crashes may be less reliable given the short duration of the trial period based on accepted traffic engineering practices, this data will be collected and analyzed as well.

The public will have the opportunity to get used to the changes over the winter. In April 2016, more traffic data will be collected with the modifications in place. Comparisons between the data before and after will be reviewed, and the City Commission will then have the opportunity to decide on whether to conclude or continue the trial to ensure the reviews and concerns have been adequately addressed. 

A secondary sewer improvement project is also planned for this corridor in the spring of 2016.  The City hopes to make relatively minor changes to the sewer system that will help direct more storm water flow to the Rouge River, in an ongoing effort to keep sewage treatment costs down.  This project will be coordinated with the resurfacing of West Maple Road.

For more information, download the West Maple Road Steering Committee Report and view the Multi-Modal Transportation Board's Minutes and Agendas page.