Plans for traffic-calming measures on McDaniel Avenue face uncertain future

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Bids for traffic-calming measures designed to slow motorists on McDaniel Avenue have come in over budget, and the city is trying to figure out what to do.

The city had budgeted $100,000 for the project that included landscaped bump-outs and some restriping between Augusta Street and Crescent Avenue as well as some landscaped islands and restriping around Woodland Way and University Ridge. But bids came in at $160,000, said Greenville Public Works Director Mike Murphy.

The Alta Vista Neighborhood Association, which has been asking for traffic-calming measures on the street for the past three years, bought a radar gun and measured speeds over three days. Alta Vista Neighborhood Association President Curt Hall said the average speed was 41.5 mph, well over the 30 mph posted limit. They clocked some drivers going 60 mph.

Part of the problem is that the road is wide and straight. According to the National Association of City Transportation Officials’ Urban Street Design Guide, drivers travel about 9 mph faster for every additional 3 feet of road width.

Now, the city is re-evaluating the scope of work to see what can still be accomplished to slow traffic, said Allen Reid, traffic operations engineer for the city and project manager for the McDaniel project.

Reid said the city hasn’t decided on a new plan, but it will likely result in the project being rebid.

Speed humps can’t be installed because McDaniel is a state road, Murphy said.

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