The prestigious Palmer Woods neighborhood in Detroit wants to reduce cut through traffic by closing some of their street connections with Woodward and 7 Mile Road. The Hamilton-Anderson architects designed some road closures for Strathcona, Balmoral, and Lincolnshire.
Are they worried about speeding, cut through bicyclists? Probably not, so why do their designs block bicycle travel?
It’s frustrating seeing design work that considers the existing trees, catch basins, turn around driveways for vehicles, and trash pickup, yet ignore safe bicycle travel.
All that’s needed at the three closures is a bicycle cut-through – a paved pathway that’s only wide enough for bicycles yet still maintains a connection between the two roads.
These designs aren’t just for bicyclists cutting through the neighborhood, they would also make it easier for residents to bike to nearby popular destinations like Palmer Park and Dutch Girl Donuts.
It’s unclear whether the City will fix these designs. The City was asked back in October 2009 to make these designs bike friendly along with some suggested design elements, none of which are shown in the drawings shared with City Council on Monday.
City Council has a recommended resolution before them this morning. It could be improved by added the below bolded text.
RESOLVED, that the following portion of public streets shall be closed to vehicular traffic and converted into landscaped ares with access for necessary utility service vehicles, City of Detroit, and cut-through bicycle travel:
Unfortunately there are many road closures in Metro Detroit communities that are of a similar poor design. Lathrup Village, Southfield, Royal Oak all offer examples of how not to design road closures.
Hopefully we won’t have to add Detroit to that list.