Redevelopment Commission has taken receipt of a proposed plan for the
reconfiguration of Gateway Blvd. west of Village Point.
At their meeting
Monday night, members voted unanimously to approve the concept and enter
into a contract with Lawson Fisher Associates--at a cost not to exceed
$50,000--to develop a formal design.
The commission did
not commit itself yet to proceeding with actual construction, as
members first wish to enter into discussions with the various stakeholders
in the area: the Speedway gas station, Bob Evans, the Hilton Garden Inn,
Culver’s, and AJ’s Pizza.
The point of a
reconfiguration would be to ease the stacking problem in the westbound lanes
of Gateway Blvd., created by the median traffic islands, which pinch the
four lanes at the mouth of Gateway Blvd.--at its intersection with Ind.
49--to two lanes just east of the Speedway road cut on Gateway Blvd. During
peak-traffic periods, motorists are often stacked as far east as Village
Point, forced to wait for several cycles of the traffic signal before
emerging out of the two-lane bottleneck.
The key features of
the proposed plan:
* The traffic
islands would be lopped roughly in half to create four full westbound lanes
west of Matson Street.
eastbound on Gateway Blvd. would no longer be able to enter the Speedway by
turning left and crossing westbound Gateway Blvd. by means of the current
pass-through between the two islands. Instead, they would be directed to
Speedway’s road cut on Matson Street.
* Speedway’s road
cut on westbound Gateway Blvd. would be right-in/right-out only.
* The Bob Evans and
Hilton Garden Inn road cut on eastbound Gateway Blvd. would be
right-in/right-out only. Customers leaving both businesses would be directed
to the intersection of Matson Street, where they could make U-turns onto
westbound Gateway Blvd.
westbound on Gateway Blvd. would have a left-turn only lane allowing them to
access Bob Evans and the Hilton Garden Inn.
signage would be erected to facilitate the reconfiguration.
Town Engineer Mark
O’Dell and Street Commissioner John Schnadenberg both indicated that they
like the reconfiguration in principle. Schnadenberg, for his part, said
that, if the commission ultimately approves a formal design, he hopes the
project can be completed this year.
The plan is for now
still very much in the concept stage, however. Member Emerson DeLaney
wondered, for instance, whether the right-in/right-out only road cuts for
the Speedway, the Bob Evans, and the Hilton Garden Inn would be enforced by
actual concrete pork chops or simply striped. That decision, a Lawson-Fisher
rep replied, hasn’t been made yet.