What are your impressions of the temporary pedestrian improvements and lane adjustments on Perimeter Center Place?
The City of Dunwoody has been considering pedestrian improvements on Perimeter Center Place in response to concerns from nearby residents, building tenants and pedestrians about crossing this corridor. especially when walking to and from the Target shopping center. A recent accident involving a pedestrian crossing at this location has brought additional attention to this issue.
City staff and engineering consultants have explored possible solutions and potential pedestrian safety improvements. Experience and best practices indicate drivers do not sufficiently yield to standard striped crosswalks when they are installed on
multi-lane roads with relatively infrequent pedestrian traffic. Crosswalks placed on these roads tend to improve the perception of safety without greatly improving the actual safety.
With this in mind the city is recommending the conversion of the middle segment of Perimeter Center Place (across from the Terraces office buildings and adjacent to the Target shopping center) into one lane in each direction to allow for the installation of a pedestrian refuge island.
Pedestrian islands have been shown to greatly enhance pedestrian safety by providing a refuge between crossings of traffic in opposing directions. In addition, the presence of a pedestrian island is expected to slightly decrease speeds on the roadway.
The city is confident the proposed changes will result in a safer street that will still effectively accommodate traffic volumes. The temporary pedestrian refuge configuration will provide the city with critical “real-time” information as well as important user feedback. The city plans to begin implementation in early August and continue through the rest of the month.
The city participates in a traffic management program that invests $1,000,000 annually into infrastructure and signal timing in the Perimeter business district and we are very sensitive to the impact any proposed changes could have on traffic flow. In preparation for this project, the city has collected traffic counts and has analyzed traffic flow on two separate occasions over the last 1½ years. Although traffic volumes on adjacent streets such as Ashford Dunwoody Road and Perimeter Center West are high, the number of vehicles that use Perimeter Center Place on a daily basis is relatively low in comparison.
A close analysis of the traffic volume data indicates most of the roadway could operate adequately with one lane in each direction. Traffic is heaviest in the afternoon commute when cars exit the two Terraces parking decks travelling towards Meadow Lane and Ashford Dunwoody Road. The proposed lane configuration accounts for this traffic by keeping the existing two lanes outbound between the north and south exits to the Terraces parking decks and Meadow Lane and Ashford Dunwoody respectively.
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