Residents of Mount Pleasant feel that the proposed development will cause significant congestion around Broadway, 10th Avenue, and Watson Street. Retail space on the first floor of the project and loading bays for large trucks off Watson will mean that trucks are pulling in and out of Watson Street on a regular basis. The only access to the development will be through 10th Avenue, which is dedicated as a bike lane in the Mount Pleasant Community Plan. Rize’s current plan claims to reduce the amount of traffic on 10th Avenue, one of the city’s most important bicycle arteries. However, a loading bay on Watson Street will only be accessible from 10th Avenue, which will mean large trucks pulling in and out of the bike route several times a day.
A recipe for negatively impacting pedestrians, cyclists, transit and drivers.
(Quotes taken from the Transportation Assessment)
The intersection of Broadway and Watson is not the sort of corner you’d expect cars and large trucks pulling in and out of on a regular basis. This proposal will create unmanageable congestion at this intersection if we stop to consider the following:
The building has garage entrance for 292 parking spaces (about 100 of them commercial) and 6 commercial truck bays on Watson St. most of
“Watson Street access at Broadway falls between two bus stops (#99 and #9) which both have short headways (as low as 3-minutes) and they take up most of the room on the south side between Kingsway and Main St)”
“Coupled with this is the high volume of pedestrian movements crossing the Watson St. Access, almost 300 people in the peak hour period.”
As trucks are forced to exit onto Broadway, vehicles want to get in-and-out of the building, pedestrians are crossing Watson St. and Broadway may be packed with cars and busses we see the following scenarios:
Eastbound on Broadway into building
- We see cars on Broadway waiting to enter Watson St.
- We see cars tying up buses as they move into the HOV lane as they wait to cross Main St, or when they are waiting in the small headway between Main St and Watson St. (There is no space behind a B-line bus if it is stopped between Watson St and Main St.)
- We see cars pulling in front of stopped busses to enter Watson St. with no ability to see pedestrians
- We see cars not being able to enter Watson from Broadway turning on Kingsway and down 10th Ave bike route to enter Watson Again.
- We see cars behind busses on broadway up on Broadway turning up Main crossing 3 lanes to make an immediate left turn on 10th to enter Watson St.
Out of the Building onto broadway:
- We see trucks and cars stuck on Watson having to wait for pedestrians to clear the intersection
- We see cars stuck on Broadway waiting for trucks to clear an already narrow Watson St. before entering
- We see trucks and cars stuck on Watson having to wait for other traffic to clear broadway. (Take a look at the google maps satellite image they used for their mockups (notice how Watson is blocked because there are too many cars on Broadway)
- We see large trucks with large turning radiuses having to wait a long time to cross 2 lanes of Broadway traffic
Impact on cyclists
This study makes a lot of assumptions about how the curb designed for cyclists only eastbound on 10th at Watson will “greatly benefit cyclists”. We disagree with this statement as there will be more traffic turning onto 10th at Main St as well as traffic turning on to 10th from Kingsway, creating more conflict with cyclists than what exists today. Especially on 10th Ave between Main St and Watson St. as trucks and cars seek to turn onto 10th and then turn left again onto Watson St.
The amount of traffic to and from the building
There will be an entire second floor devoted to a big grocery store. as well as the commercial space on the first floor. The amount of traffic generated flowing in and out of the building will be around 2 per minute. (commercial and residential combined. page 33). We think this combined with the potential for congestion, combined with the plans to increase density around the area further will create a scenario whereby traffic becomes an issue.
“The proposed development is estimated to generate circa 70 vehicles per hour in the morning peak hour and circa 160 vehicles per hour in the afternoon peak hour. Given that 70 parking stalls will be provided for commercial, this is expected to generate around 100 vehicles per hour (1 to 2 vehicles per minute), which equates to a parking turn over of roughly 50 vehicles per hour.”
A visual perspective
Summary of the Transportation Assessment:
(Transportation Assessment pdf 3.1MB) prepared for Rize by Blunt and Associates.
Updated ammendments: Revision cover letter and Updated Transportation Assessment.
Current Pedestrian Traffic
Broadway frontage: 90/hr (am peak) 270/hr (pm peak)
Current Cyclists on 10th Ave
Eastbound: 230/hr (am peak) 190/hr (pm peak) – taken from the conclusion.
Eastbound on 10th for cyclists only
The proposal plans to reduce the number of non-local vehicles using the 10th Ave bike route by implementing an extended curb on the south-east corder of Watson and 10th. Essentially creating a blocked path for cars traveling eastbound on 10th Ave past Watson St.
Parking and Loading (updated)
- Commercial: 98 spaces (increased from 67 spaces)
- STIR parking: 10 spaces (reduced from 33 spaces)
- STIR visitor: 2 spaces
- Car share: 2 spaces
- Market Residential: 180 spaces (increased from 173 spaces)
- Loading Residential: 2 class A (small truck), 1 Class B (med truck)
- Loading Commercial: 4 Class B (med truck) and 2 Class C (large truck)
total spaces: 292
total loading: 9 truck bays (6 commercial)
“Trucks entering the loading area are expected to arrive from Main St., turning left into Watson Street from 10th Ave. … exiting would be in forward gear to Watson Street and then right to Broadway.”
The study goes into the discussion of other options to see if use on 10th Ave could be minimized.
“It is acknowledged that both the proposed arrangement and Option 1 interact with the 10th Avenue bicycle route.”
The section on parking and loading concludes that…
“…the preferred arrangement balances the need to gain access, while providing a mitigation measure[Eastbound on 10th for cyclists only] to remove traffic (including turning movements) at the 10th Ave / Watson Street intersection, which will greatly benefit cyclists.”
[This page is subject to change without notice as we gather new information and/or facts.]