The North Tonawanda Common Council will host a public hearing on Tuesday night to discuss an engineering firm's study suggesting changes to Nash Road and Payne Avenue.
The city recently asked the team at Parsons Brinckerhoff to perform a repurposing study on both roads, indicating potential problems and solutions. This kind of repurposing is often called a "road diet."
Right now, Nash Road is a four-lane roadway, but city officials report that frequent travel in the outside lanes is causing damage to catch basins that are used to collect storm water from the road. According to the study, officials also want to calm traffic speeds along residential areas of Nash Road.
The engineers have offered two ways the city could repurpose Nash Road.
The example, called Concept One in the study, converts Nash into a three-lane road. It includes one lane of traffic in each direction and a middle turning lane. Excess space is converted into on-street parking on one side of the road.
Concept Two calls for a similar three-lane layout. It keeps the two lanes of traffic with a middle turning lane, but replaces the on-street parking from Concept One with bicycle lanes in both directions.
At 37 feet wide, Payne Avenue is only three feet narrower than Nash Road, but it is only two lanes instead of four. The wide lanes can pose a safety risk to drivers because some occasionally try to treat the excess space like a second lane. City officials asked engineers working on the study to come up with alternate uses for the excess space.
For Payne Avenue, the study also offers two redesign concepts.
The engineers' suggestions for Concept One is a three-lane roadway, including two lanes of traffic with a middle turning lane.
Concept Two is a two-lane roadway with no turning lane. The excess space is used to offer on-street parking on one side of the roadway.
The North Tonawanda Common Council will hold its public hearing on these proposals in Common Council Chambers at North Tonawanda City Hall, 216 Payne Avenue, at 7 p.m. You can read the full Nash Road and Payne Avenue Road Repurposing Report here.