|Big changes could be coming for Traverse City's busy Division Street.|
Major improvements could be on the way for one of Traverse City’s busiest roads and one of the region’s greatest transportation challenges: Division Street. And right now, local residents can help shape its future.
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is asking for your comments on how to improve the road between 14th Street and Grandview Parkway.
MDOT held the first open house on October 28, and is still accepting comments through the project’s website, which you can find here.
The next open house is on December 9 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Munson Medical Center.
Your comments will be used to inform preliminary design proposals that transportation consultants expect to draft and present to the community in April 2015. Then in June, a preferred design will be chosen.
This is all part of the long-term planning and design process that may lead to major changes that could improve traffic flow, make the street safer for families, and reconnect Traverse City to its own west side. The study is officially called a Planning and Environmental Linkages study.
In the past, we’ve made a few recommendations on Division’s design here.
In short, we believe:
1) Designers should strike a balance between moving traffic and moving people across the road. People should have safer options for crossing the street, like mid-block crossings or pedestrian-activated cross walks;
2) MDOT should use street trees, sidewalks, and better lighting to create a sence of "place" along the road;
3) And, engineers should reconstruct intersections so that there are fewer backups and people on foot, bike, or bus can get through them safely.
The City of Traverse City’s traffic page includes links to past studies on Division Street, including the Division Design Initiative and the Division Street Steering Committee Recommendations.