Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Hoboken Introduces Final Washington Street Redesign Plan



Bird’s-Eye View Rendering of Washington Street (Downtown).

The City of Hoboken has completed a conceptual design for the “complete street” redesign of Washington Street. The design was presented at the final public meeting on September 23, 2014.

“I thank the community for providing their input on this important project through public meetings, focus groups, and surveys,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “This plan builds on our award-winning main street by improving pedestrian safety and traffic flow, enhancing mobility for all users, and supporting local businesses. Now that we have community consensus, I look forward to working with the City Council and hope they will fully support this important project so it can be completed as quickly as possible.”

Complete streets are roadways designed for safe, attractive, and comfortable travel by users of all ages and abilities. The City’s plan proposes upgrading Washington Street with safety improvements and enhancements to get around safely on foot, bicycle, car, or public transportation. By providing safe and equitable travel for everyone—including children, families, older adults, and people with disabilities—complete streets stimulate active, healthy behavior, reduce automotive traffic and pollution, encourage more foot traffic to businesses, and enhance interaction on Hoboken’s vital main street.

Washington-Street-pedestrian-level-rendering
Highlights of the final concept plan include:
Improved Road Operations & Traffic Flow
  • Roadway resurfacing for entire corridor
  • Designated commercial loading zones with time restrictions
  • Short-term parking for quick errands
  • Numbered parking spaces for quicker & easier parking and payment
  • New traffic signals and timing increase corridor average speed from 6-8mph to 8-12mph
  • Parallel and angled parking maintained on both sides of the street
  • Back-in angled parking for safer parking
Improved Pedestrian Safety & Lighting
  • State of the art signal design to ensure visibility for all users of the street
  • Pedestrian countdown signal heads
  • Improved lighting at intersections
  • Refurbish or replace existing street lighting to better illuminate sidewalk and reduce glare upwards
  • Concrete curb extensions at corners reduce crossing distances by almost 50% (from 50 ft to 26 ft) and provide additional space for pedestrian amenities
  • New high visibility, skid-resistant, retro-reflective crosswalks
  • Reconstructed curb ramps for improved ADA accessibility
Streetscape Improvements for Aesthetics, Livability & Economic Vitality
  • New concrete sidewalks
  • New light poles and fixtures for improved street lighting
  • New benches and solar/smart trash receptacles, street trees
  • City-wide wayfinding signage
Increased Mobility & Transit Access
  • Redesigned “portal” style bus shelters
  • Protected bicycle lanes physically separated from motor vehicle traffic to accommodate all skill levels currently riding on sidewalk
  • New custom bicycle racks
Landscaping & Stormwater Management
  • Replacement of damaged and missing street trees
  • Improved street tree pit design for tree health and aesthetics
  • Green infrastructure to capture stormwater runoff: rain gardens at corners and expanded street tree pits
The plan will be presented to the City Council in October. The preliminary estimate for the complete plan is $14 million, and the City will seek State and Federal grants combined with bond funding to finance the project. Funding is already in place for completing the final engineering design and construction plans. The next steps in the project include:
  • Pre-Design Phase: coordination with utility upgrades, PSE&G lighting coordination, geotechnical investigations, stormwater/drainage analysis): (est: 3-4 months)
  • Final Survey/Preliminary & Final Engineering Design & Construction Plans (est: additional 6-8 months)
  • Construction (est: additional 12 months)

Information Provided by Donna Antonucci