Jan 15, 2014 2:11 AM
The Skyway may be seeing some big changes by the end of this summer. At Tuesday night’s town council meeting in Paradise, plans were presented to change the entire design of the downtown corridor.
The town of Paradise has seen many accidents and tragedies along the Skyway over the years, but with the help of a federal grant they're hoping to make some much needed changes. The town received a highway safety improvement grant through the state of California. It's a $1 Million grant with 90% of that coming from federal funds. The changes would be from Pearson Road to Elliot Road on Skyway. The main changes would be reducing lanes from four to three, leaving one in each direction with a center left turn lane.
Officials say commuting time would only be increased by less than twenty seconds but the main reason is for the safety of everyone. “Our goals are to improve pedestrian safety and motorist safety and we can do that by reducing the lanes and reducing the number of conflicts. Also for pedestrians, (we’ll) install pedestrian bulb outs, which come further into the road and increase the visibility, add flashing beacons (and) make it a more shopping pedestrian friendly environment in the downtown corridor,” explained Marc Mattox, Paradise Town Engineer.
The town of Paradise used collision data to evaluate how to design the roadway and where to put the pedestrian crosswalks. It will also increase the number of public parking spaces in front of downtown businesses. This design has been proven effective in other cities where they saw an increase in safety and efficiency.
Town officials will be holding other public meetings for input from the community. They hope to have a final design approved by the council in May and start construction in late summer.
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