Durango pedestrians will have a new place to cross north Main Avenue’s busy thoroughfare, according to a recent announcement from Durango Transit.
Drivers tend to speed along north Main Avenue, and pedestrians have no available crosswalks for a quarter-mile stretch between 27th and 32nd streets. The Colorado Department of Transportation and the city of Durango took on a 30th Street crossing project, considering five different options for a new crossing. They chose a location midway between the 29th and 30th street intersections.
The crossing will include a crosswalk, pedestrian refuge island in the middle of the road and a rectangular rapid flashing beacon similar to the crossing at Camino del Rio and Seventh Street.
The midblock location near Bird’s, a Durango restaurant, minimally impacts turning business traffic, avoids disruption for current Mountain Middle School traffic, avoids utility conflicts and provides a direct connection between two transit stops, according to the city of Durango.
The area around the 30th Street intersection is home to a school, several hotels, transit stops, north City Market, residential neighborhoods and restaurants, such as Bird’s, Zia Taqueria and Taco Bell.
Vehicles speed up between 27th Street and 32nd Street given the lack of crossings and stop lights. Pedestrians and cyclists, meanwhile, have no easy place to cross along the same stretch.
During the 30th Street Connect project planning, the city and state evaluation took into account traffic engineering considerations, impacts on business entrances and exits, transit connectivity and multimodal safety. Public feedback was split between prioritizing students, businesses, transit and resident needs.
The project will be paid for locally and by the state. Durango will provide $95,000 and CDOT will match the city’s contribution. The city was also awarded $75,000 in multimodal option funds from Senate Bill 267 and $25,000 from the State Transportation Innovation Council for the project.