North Main Street Road Diet Study
The 2016 West Hartford Road Diet and Safety Study (Phase 1) was sponsored by the Capitol Region Council of Governments to complete a safety study on North Main Street, between Albany Avenue (Route 44) and Farmington Avenue. The study analyzed the feasibility of implementing a road diet on North Main Street. The road diet would change the travel lanes on North Main Street from two lanes in each direction to one lane in each direction with a two-way center left turn lane or exclusive left turn lane at intersections. The intent of the road diet is to slow traffic, reduce vehicular crashes, and make the corridor more accessible for pedestrians and bicyclists. Click here to view the Phase 1 study.
In 2020, the Town of West Hartford hired VHB to conduct the second phase of the North Main Street Road Diet. This phase included additional work to evaluate a proposed road diet on North Main Street between Albany Avenue (Route 44) and Farmington Avenue. The project also included a trial of the road diet which was implemented in mid-August 2021 and continue through the spring of 2022. The purpose of the trial is to evaluate the road diet concept with extensive data collection and determine if it is a success or failure.
The road diet trail has achieved the objectives to reduce crash frequency, reduce operating speeds, and improve accessibility for pedestrians and bicyclists. The road diet trial has also received a favorable response from the community across public input such as the two surveys, two public information meetings and the feedback documented with a consensus who consider the minor increases in vehicle delays to be tolerable. With the key objectives achieved, the Town agrees with VHB's recommendation to maintain the road diet. The Final Report, which includes additional recommendations can be viewed by clicking here. The Report Appendix can be viewed by clicking here (Warning: file size is 171 MB).
Additional information about Road Diets can be found on the Federal Highway Administration website.
Click here to learn more about the proper use of the Two-Way-Left-Turn-Lane (TWLTL).
Project Study Area
This project includes a proposed road diet on North Main Street between Albany Avenue (Route 44) and Farmington Avenue. The study will also evaluate traffic volumes and travel patterns on Trout Brook Drive, Mountain Road, and other connecting roadways. Click here to see the study area map.
The study began in September 2020 and will continue through the Spring of 2022. A tentative schedule of some of the major tasks are listed below.
- Traffic Data Collection Fall 2020 (Completed)
- Concept Plan Development Winter 2020/21 (Completed)
- Public Outreach – Pre-Trial Spring 2021 (Completed)
- Road Diet Trial Implementation Summer 2021 (Completed)
- Traffic Data Collection Summer/Fall 2021 (Completed)
- Road Diet Evaluation Fall 2021/Winter 2022 (Completed)
- Public Outreach – Post Trial Winter/Spring 2022 (Completed)
- Final Recommendation Spring 2022 (Completed)
Traffic Volume Network
The following graphics depict the 2020 Existing conditions during the evening peak hour for the traffic network. The traffic volumes indicate the number of vehicles turning at each intersection. The primary study area (North Main Street) is denoted by the red dashed bubble. The volumes shown are the graphics are based on a mix of historic count data obtained from the CT DOT and the Town of West Hartford, and data collected by VHB in 2020. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, traffic volumes are slightly smaller than pre-pandemic conditions, the traffic volumes depicted in the graphics have taken this into account. The shown traffic volumes assume a network of 2020 pre-pandemic conditions. Click to view the Traffic Volume Network.
In order to assess safety conditions within the study area, collision data was collected from the University of Connecticut, Connecticut Crash Data Repository (CTCDR) for the most recent three-year period available, from January 2017 to December 2019. It should be noted that only collisions that result in death, injury, or property damage in excess of $1,000 are required to be reported. The collision data was reviewed for all major corridors within the project study area, with particular focus given to the study area intersections.
According to this data, 318 crashes were reported in the study area during the three-year analysis period. The type and severity of all collisions recorded at the study intersections along the Mountain Road, North Main Street, and Trout Brook Drive corridors within the study area are summarized in the following Table. Click to view the Crash Analysis.
Click here to view the concept plan showing the proposed changes to North Main Street.
Your Feedback Matters! A public survey was distributed last spring to solicit input from the community in advance of the Road Diet Trial. We received over 460 responses and the survey results can be viewed here. With the Road Diet Trial underway, a second public survey was available from mid November through the end of January and generated over 1900 responses. A summary of the results can be viewed here.
View a presentation that was made by the Town’s consultant VHB at the West Hartford Pedestrian and Bicycle Commission Meeting on April 12, 2021. Please click here to view a video of the meeting starting at 22:34.
A virtual public information meeting was recorded on April 29, 2021 to discuss the project and obtain feedback from the community. Click on the video thumbnail to view a recording of the meeting.