06/12/13 — Streetscape project: next steps

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Streetscape project: next steps

By Matt Caulder
Published in News on June 12, 2013 1:46 PM

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This is a view of the intersection of Center and Mulberry streets in downtown Goldsboro, where the first phase of the Streetscape redesign project currently ends. The second phase would begin at the intersection and continue south along Center Street. Work is expected to start in January.

The city of Goldsboro has held two public input sessions to hear what downtown business owners want to see happen in the next phase of Streetscape, but the comments didn't stop there.

Since the meetings, Randy Guthrie, development services director in the city Planning Department, has been receiving more information regarding what the businesses on Center Street want to see.

Guthrie said three main aspects of the next phase of Streetscape were discussed at the meeting -- roundabouts, sidewalks and median sidewalks.

"The middle sidewalk is not as necessary if traffic circles are installed because they are not conducive to crossing in the middle," Guthrie said.

Those areas could become a green space without any sidewalk on them.

Possible changes were discussed to the existing traffic pattern to add single lane roundabouts to Center Street at existing intersections or to include medians across some intersections eliminating left turns or crossing Center Street.

"The people weren't a big fan of (closing crossings) but we weren't really surprised," Guthrie said. "The Council didn't really like that either, but we were presenting the different options."

The roundabouts proposed are different from the one at Center Street and Ash Street, said Kim Best, Goldsboro public information officer. The proposed roundabouts would have a mountable curb for tractor-trailers and emergency vehicles.

"There were a lot of comments about roundabouts and I would say they were majority favorable," Guthrie said. "One concern was that the size of the roundabouts would eliminate more parking than was necessary, but we think it's important for 18-wheelers to be able to get down there and turn around to make deliveries."

The next phase of Streetscape will begin where the last phase stopped at the intersection of Center and Mulberry streets and continue south along Center Street.

The next phase is designed to have angled parking in the middle of the street, with a shallower angle to allow drivers to see oncoming traffic better when backing out.

The first phase features a 33-foot median. The median in the second phase is planned to be 18 feet across.

Guthrie presented a tentative construction schedule for the next phase of Streetscape if plans are completed by September. The project would go out for bidding in November, with construction starting in January 2014. Work would be expected to be completed by October 2014.