The city, as part of its study of I-277 (the famous "freeway cap") study, conducted a survey of motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists who use uptown. A synopsis of the results is part of this PowerPoint presentation, which was given last Monday. If you can follow that link, the PowerPoint contains a drawing (above) of one possibility for what South Tryon might look like in years to come. The artist was Ed DeLara of the consulting firm HNTB, which conducted the design workshop pro-bono.
Here are some highlights from the survey results.
Commuters and visitors think signs that list more exits and the distances to them, and better lighting on signs, would improve I-277. They think more signs directing drivers to I-277 access streets are needed.
Other concerns commonly voiced by commuters and visitors:
- Difficulty merging onto and across I-277 to reach their exit.
- Fast and aggressive driving on I-277
- Inadequate signage to alert drivers to when and where their exit is.
- It's not wide enough for a “breakdown lane” to get fender-benders and breakdowns out of traffic.
- Too dark, poor visibility on several stretches of I-277 at night.
- Poor driving conditions in the rain; standing water.
- Trash and litter.
- The chief complaints are the prevalence of jaywalking and the aggressiveness of uptown drivers who speed through intersections and make turns into pedestrian crosswalks.
- Also, the sidewalks across I-277 at Tryon and College are not perceived as pedestrian-friendly. Sidewalks, particularly on College, are narrower and traffic moves faster than in the center of the city. There was also a comment that these sidewalks are dirtier and more littered.
- Darkness and poor visibility under the I-277 overpasses.
- Bikers' chief concern is being visible to drivers who are driving fast and aggressively, often distracted by cell phone conversation.
- Concern over the speed with which drivers exit onto streets such as South Boulevard and College from the right, where the cyclists are riding.
- Darkness and poor visibility under the I-277 overpasses. (Gee, anyone notice a pattern?)