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Virginia department of transportation traffic - Fauquier County

Virginia department of transportation traffic - Fauquier County

Mitigation Measures US

Mitigation Measures US 29 / 15 Lee Highway & Route 215 Vint Hill Road DRAFT Evaluation & Recommendations Mitigation measures are things that can be done to improve the safety and operations of the roadway and intersection without changes to the roadway. Some mitigation measures may require very minor costs, materials, and time to implement while others may involve more significant resources. In general, mitigation measures are expected to be less expensive and quicker to implement than making changes to the roadway. The potential mitigation measures identified for this intersection are listed below. 1. Fix the existing intersection roadway lighting. During our field visit we observed that both of the existing roadway lighting fixtures were working only intermittently. Each light remained lit for a few minutes and then cut off for a few minutes. Fixing these light fixtures will improve the visibility of the intersection, especially the static signing. However, fixing these light fixtures is not expected to significantly address the operational and safety concerns at this intersection. Planning level cost estimate: Less than $20,000. 2. Trim tree branches to improve the visibility of the advanced warning signs on US 29 northbound. Trimming tree branches that currently limit the visibility of some advanced warning signs on US 29 northbound will allow the signs to achieve their maximum effectiveness at warning drivers of the signal ahead. Given the vertical curve sight distance limitations of the crest hill in advance of the intersection and the other warning mechanisms already in place (striping rumble strips, signal ahead striping, overhead signal ahead warning flashers) trimming the trees is not expected to significantly address the operational and safety concerns at this intersection. Planning level cost estimate: $10,000 - $30,000 3. Correct the pavement markings in the area of the intersection to comply with current standards. The existing intersection pavement markings do not meet current VDOT and MUTCD standards. As a result the markings do not provide the driver with indications of a signalized intersection. Correcting the striping will make the roadway “look and feel” like a signalized intersection, meeting driver expectations for a signalized intersection. Given the vertical curve sight distance limitations of the crest hill in advance of the intersection and the other warning mechanisms already in place (striping rumble strips, signal ahead striping, overhead signal ahead warning flashers) correcting the pavement markings is not expected to significantly address the operational and safety concerns at this intersection by itself. Planning level cost estimate: Less than $20,000 4. Eradicate the stop bar at the mast arm pole with flashing signals on US 29 northbound. When the US 29 and Vint Hill Road intersection signal was installed there was a pre-signal for US 29 northbound traffic at the hillcrest approaching Vint Hill Road. The pre-signal was installed in an effort to address the limited vertical sight distance over the hill. The pre-signal was removed some time later, due to traffic operational issues. When the pre-signal was removed the stop bar at the pre-signal was not eradicated. Since a stop bar by itself indicates that a driver should stop, the stop bar should be removed to both prevent someone from stopping there and to maintain the credibility of other stop bars. Eradicating the stop bar will not address the operational and safety concerns at the Vint Hill Road intersection. Planning level cost estimate: Less than $20,000 Page 6 of 21 Over a Century of Engineering Excellence

US 29 / 15 Lee Highway & Route 215 Vint Hill Road DRAFT Evaluation & Recommendations NOTE: VDOT has already implemented this mitigation measure, by eradicating the stop bar at the hillcrest. This measure was implemented after this issue was identified as a concern during this study. 5. Prohibit left turns from US 29 northbound into the commercial drive across from Vint Hill Road and place more signs on the US 29 northbound approach indicating no u-turn, no left turn. Currently U-turns from US 29 northbound to US 29 southbound are prohibited by a single static sign at the intersection. There is not a left turn bay for the US 29 northbound approach to the intersection. So any vehicle that turns left (or U-turns) from US 29 northbound must do so from the left through lane, which results in slow downs and stopping in the left through lane. The slow downs and stops in the left through lane likely contribute to the higher number of rear-end collisions in the left lane compared to the right lane for this approach. Prohibiting left turns and installing additional signing indicating that left turns and U-turns are prohibited should reduce the number of crashes in the left lane and should eliminate the six crashes between US 29 northbound left turns and US 29 southbound traffic. While prohibiting left-turns and U-turns from US 29 northbound should reduce the number of rearend collisions in the left lane, the number of rear-end collisions in the left lane will likely remain significantly higher than the number of rear-end collisions in the right lane. Drivers in the right lane can use the right shoulder and right-turn lane to avoid rear-ending a stopped vehicle. The left shoulder of US 29 northbound is not wide enough to allow drivers in the left lane to maneuver around a stopped vehicle. Planning level cost estimate: Less than $20,000 NOTE: VDOT has already implemented this mitigation measure, by posting NO LEFT-TURN signs and an additional NO U-TURN sign. This measure was implemented after this issue was identified as a concern during this study. 6. Install trailblazer signing to route Vint Hill Road to US 29 southbound traffic along Route 600 (Broad Run Church Road). Installing trailblazer signs to route Vint Hill Road to US 29 southbound traffic along Route 600 could reduce (or eliminate) the volume of left-turn vehicles from Vint Hill Road to US 29 southbound. Given the relatively low traffic volumes for this left turn movement reducing the volume will not significantly address the operational or safety concerns at the Vint Hill Road intersection. However, using this routing to eliminate the left-turn movement would allow for more signal green time for US 29 through traffic and would likely improve the overall operations and safety of the intersection. See Figure Mitigation Measure 6 that shows a layout of this measure. Planning level cost estimate: Less than $20,000 7. Replace the stop sign for right turn traffic from Vint Hill Road to US 29 northbound with a signal. Currently there is a stop sign on the channelized right-turn lane from Vint Hill Road to US 29 northbound. There is also an existing loop detector that is tied to the signal. The detector is used to extend the US 29 northbound traffic signal red phase to provide a gap for some of the queued traffic from Vint Hill Road to turn right. This condition encourages right-turn traffic to treat the stop sign more like a yield sign, while many drivers will correctly come to a complete stop at the sign. Replacing the stop sign with a signal would allow drivers to turn right on red when a gap is available and provide a green signal to the right-turn traffic for a portion of the signal phase. Providing a green light would reduce the time needed to clear the right-turn traffic queue, which in turn could allow for more green time on the through traffic signal phase. The longer green time for the through traffic could reduce queuing on US 29 northbound and thereby reduce the number and/or severity of the rear-end collisions on US 29 northbound. However, the change in green time for the through traffic from this change would likely be small and therefore not significantly address the operational and safety concerns at the Vint Hill Road intersection. Page 7 of 21 Over a Century of Engineering Excellence

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