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Jason Knight
New member
Username: Jknight17

Post Number: 1
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Tuesday, July 13, 2010 - 10:49 am:   

Why are the sidewalks being paved so close to the Eastbound lanes of Eldorado Pkwy between 423 and Teel Pkwy. It is my understanding it is for the new school Purefoy Elementary, if that is the case are we asking children to walk right up against a 6 lane road with a speed limit of 50mph?
 

Jason Brodigan, Sr. Civil Engineer
Moderator
Username: Jason_brodigan

Post Number: 46
Registered: 06-2008
Posted on Tuesday, July 20, 2010 - 07:46 am:   

The sidewalks being constructed along Eldorado Parkway between FM 423 and the Dallas North Tollway are a part of the City's Hike and Bike trail system. These sidewalks will also provide pedestrian acess to Purefoy Elementary.

Right of way constraints often restrict the placement of the sidewalk from being further from the roadway. The City typically has 11 feet of right of way from the curb. Rather than the minimum 4 foot width required by ADA rules, the width of our hike and bike trail is 8 feet, which leaves only 3 feet of separation from the roadway. In addition, utility poles and landscaping are also often located within the right of way further restricting where the sidewalk can be located. Most of the sidewalk along Eldorado provides the 3 feet of separation, but there are some locations along Eldorado where the sidewalk has a smaller separation because of limitations placed on it by drainage structures or in places where the right-of-way gets narrower. This typically occurs near right turn lanes so the sidewalk is often placed adjacent to the turn lane. However, it should be noted that there is less traffic in a turn lane compared to the main lanes and that traffic is traveling slower than the main lanes.

We understand your concern about the sidewalk's proximity to the roadway; however, utilizing the far edge of the hike and bike trail allows users to stay nearly 11 feet from the roadway in most places, and nearly 8 feet from the roadway next to the turn lanes which have slower traffic. If parents are concerned, we encourage them to walk with their child on the route before school starts in order to instruct them on how to walk on the far edge to stay as far from the road as possible.
 

Jason Knight
New member
Username: Jknight17

Post Number: 2
Registered: 07-2010
Posted on Sunday, July 25, 2010 - 08:23 am:   

Is there any type of barrier that can be constructed between the walkway and the road? With the speed limit being 50 mph, that is traveling 73 feet per second, 11 feet from the road does not seem to be a safe distance. You would have approximately .25 seconds to react to a vehicle out of control. And this is not even taking into consideration if you a walking east, you are walking with traffic and could not see potential danger.
 

Jason Brodigan, Sr. Civil Engineer
Moderator
Username: Jason_brodigan

Post Number: 49
Registered: 06-2008
Posted on Tuesday, July 27, 2010 - 08:40 am:   

Mr. Knight,

We have to consider the safety of the vehicular traffic as well as the pedestrians. Roadway design standards dictate, for the safety of the vehicles using the roadway, a clear zone be utilized.

The clear zone is the distance from the face of the curb in which all objects should be kept clear. This is also the distance in which, research has shown, that drivers usually recover an errant vehicle. It is common design practice to eliminate objects which could be struck by a vehicle from the clear zone. The clear zone distance for a curbed urban roadway like Eldorado Parkway is 1.5 feet minimum, 3 feet desirable from the face of curb.

Based on this design criteria, it is design practice to keep objects out of the clear zone and allowing the driver to recover rather than put an object in the clear zone that could be hit.

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