The New Dixie Highway Project Team held two open house meetings, on September 14-15, 2016, to provide the public with the first glimpse of conceptual plans taking shape for $50 million in transportation improvements along the roadway. The meetings were held at the Southwest Regional Library and Wheatley Elementary School.
The following is a summary of the information provided to the public during the meetings.
Many of the initial roadway and sidewalk improvements for The New Dixie Highway will be concentrated in the section between Crums Lane in Shively and Greenwood Road in Pleasure Ridge Park. A priority was placed on improvements in this section because of the high rate of traffic crashes and traffic volume.
One of the most dangerous elements of Dixie Highway is unrestricted crossings and mid-block turns that are common because the roadway lacks raised medians and defined locations for left turns.
The New Dixie Highway Project plans to add raised medians along much of the Central Section between Crums Lane and Greenwood Road. The medians, which will range from 3-foot-wide concrete raised medians to 15-foot-wide planted islands, will help focus traffic movements primarily at intersections and cross streets. Based on citizen feedback, the Project Team is studying options for the planted medians (grass or low-growth plantings) as allowed by the project budget. High-visibility crosswalks are planned at key locations in the Central Section based on pedestrian volumes.
Dixie Highway will continue to have six lanes --- three in each direction – throughout the Central Section. Left-hand turn lanes also will be included in key locations. The new design will create standard 11-foot-wide lanes.
The New Dixie Highway Project plans to add new, wider sidewalks in the Central Section between Crums Lane and Greenwood Road. In other portions of the New Dixie Highway project area, initial improvements will be focused on the areas surrounding new bus stops and stations.
Sidewalks along Dixie Highway are in various states of repair and generally range in width from 3 to 5 feet. The Project Team is studying several options for improvements in the Central Section including:
- 6-foot sidewalks
- 6-foot sidewalks with a 2-foot safety border or verge
- 8-foot sidewalks
As funding allows, street trees may be added in some locations along the Central Section. The trees must meet state and local standards.
The New Dixie Highway Project will include the region’s first bus rapid transit route – a faster, more reliable bus line with state-of-the-art buses and three dozen bus stops and stations. The BRT line will be a new route with strategically located stops along Dixie Highway / 18th Street between the Gene Snyder Freeway and Broadway and into the downtown core.
At higher-volume locations, BRT stations may feature shelters with seating, real-time information about bus arrival times, trash receptacles and distinctive signage. At lower-volume locations, BRT stops may have signage and benches only.
The map at right shows the planned locations for BRT stops and stations.
Bus Rapid Transit
Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) helps bus riders get to their locations faster and more reliably. And BRT can help overall traffic mobility, using technology to help buses load and unload faster and move along the route more swiftly.
Queue jumps are one of the technologies that give BRT buses a head start on other vehicles at some intersections. The new BRT buses will also communicate with the new traffic signal systems. Extended green lights, which can be controlled by on-board technology, can keep buses on time and traffic flowing.