Castle Rock’s downtown intersections won’t face capacity issues for a while, according to a recent study commissioned by the town to assess how development is impacting traffic.
At the …
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At the July 5 council meeting, Nick VanderKwaak, of engineering firm Aecom, presented findings from a study that looked at all the intersections in downtown and projected growth in land use.
The results show two intersections - Plum Creek Parkway and South Wilcox Street and Wilcox Street and Fifth Street - would be the first to hit capacity limits, but only once significant growth has occurred.
“(Plum Creek Parkway and South Wilcox Street) is the first intersection to reach that (threshold capacity) and that happens when there’s a 25-30% increase in the land uses you currently have, including the entitlements,” VanderKwaak said. “So that’s quite a bit of development increase over what you currently have.”
The study used thousand-square-footage increments to measure land use growth in retail, office and housing in the downtown area. However, it didn’t account for the maximum possible height allowance in calculating potential growth.
The remaining downtown intersections didn’t hit threshold capacity within the limits of the study, suggesting downtown development is not close to impacting most downtown intersections’ capacity.
“Downtown cut-through traffic probably has a greater impact on downtown streets than downtown development does,” VanderKwaak said. “Improving alternate routes to I-25 would increase the number of people who don’t have to use downtown streets.”
The study found that 54% of traffic at downtown intersections was cut-through, or travelers going to and from places outside of downtown, while 45% of travelers were either coming to or from downtown and only 1% of trips happening within downtown.
Another recommendation to help cut down travel in the area would be to improve bike and pedestrian access to and within downtown.
Town council didn’t vote on the study. Staff will reference it in the future to help assess development impacts.
“What we plan to do to utilize this report in the future is as redevelopment documents come in, we’ll use this as a guiding document, along with the traffic impact documents required,” Public Works Director Dan Sailer said.
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