Safety proposal seeks input on making Greenup, Scott two-way
COVINGTON, Ky. - An open house tonight gives the public a chance to learn about and voice their opinions on a proposal to return traffic flow on sections of Greenup Street and Scott Boulevard to two-way.
The open house, at the Life Learning Center at 20 W. 18th St., will run from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., with a brief presentation at 6 p.m. All residents are invited to spend a few minutes looking at study highlights, asking questions, and providing comments about the proposals.
The streets are heavily traveled north-south routes but run through several residential neighborhoods. Greenup is one-way north, Scott is one-way south.
The volume and high speed of traffic rushing through neighborhoods marked by densely packed homes, lots of children, and parking on both sides of the streets prompted leaders of the “Eastern 4” neighborhoods last year to seek help: They asked the City whether converting parts of the streets from one-way traffic to two-way traffic would increase safety by slowing down the speeding cars.
Covington hired Planning and Development Services of Kenton County (PDS) in August 2018 to guide a study and craft a traffic plan for the north-south corridors. The organization has spent a half year collecting data on how many cars use the streets and how fast they go, analyzing crash data, looking at intersections and backups, and examining the effect of things like neighborhood businesses and on-street parking.
Six months later, the study has yielded suggestions, including traffic-control devices at selected intersections and converting Greenup and Scott to two-way traffic between 20thStreet and MLK Jr. Boulevard (formerly known as 12th Street). Some of the changes would also affect nearby Madison Avenue.
Covington Economic Development Director Tom West has said that city officials wanted to not only address safety concerns but also to bring a sophisticated, nuanced, and long-range approach to an important discussion.
“A single-minded mission of moving cars as fast as possible through these residential neighborhoods totally ignores the complexity of the issue, the opportunities available, and goals related to economic vitality, pedestrian safety, neighborhood investment, and sense of community,” West said.
Two-way traffic is thought to increase safety by slowing down traffic.
But it’s also proven to be more conducive to a better quality of life and quality of place, West said. Such a change could encourage more investment in the neighborhoods and help create walkable, bikeable environments where neighborhood businesses could flourish and homeowners would make improvements to their houses, property values would increase, and new residents would be attracted to rehab abandoned and dilapidated structures.
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