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Traffic Calming HandbookTRAFFIC CALMING Handbook FINAL October 19, 2021 805-773-4656 City of Pismo Beach 760 Mattie Road, Pismo Beach, Ca 93449 Engineering@pismobeach.org Traffic Calming Handbook Page –1 PURPOSE The purpose of the Traffic Calming Handbook is to provide residents and community leaders with information about the City of Pismo Beach’s policies on traffic calming. Effective traffic calming can be achieved through education, engineering, and enforcement. This handbook is designed to provide community leaders with a model to guide residents towards a better understanding of the available tools and the necessary steps to seek basic and comprehensive traffic calming services. WHAT IS TRAFFIC CALMING High traffic speeds and volumes, as well as inappropriate driver behavior, can adversely impact neighborhoods. These conditions can also have a negative effect on pedestrians and bicyclist, particularly near schools, community centers, libraries, or parks. The City responds to these conditions by conducting traffic engineering studies which may result in lowering of the speed limit, installation of traffic control devices, pedestrian and bicycle improvements or physical roadway features. Pismo Beach’s Police Department may also deploy officers to enforce traffic and parking regulations and to provide education to school children and communities. These efforts are referred to as traffic calming. WHO DECIDES WHAT TRAFFIC CALMING IS APPROPRIATE Every request made to the City of Pismo Beach for traffic calming is first assessed by Engineering Division Staff to decide on a course of action. If a basic request is made that aligns with the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) and vehicle code, then traffic calming devices such as curb markings, street signs, etc. can be installed with the approval of the City Engineer. If the solution requires further discussion, the Engineering Division will elevate the request to a technical advisory body called the Traffic Safety Committee (TSC). The TSC is comprised of the City Manager, Director of Public Works/City Engineer, Community Development Director, Police Chief, Fire Chief, Management Services Director, and a member of the community. This technical advisory committee was formed to receive community concerns on traffic safety and to recommend traffic calming measures to the City Council. The City Council will ultimately approve or deny a request for traffic calming measures within the City when appropriate. This Handbook can be used as a guide for both requesting residents and the TSC. For questions or concerns about a traffic calming request, please call or email Madeline Kacsinta at (805) 773-7060 or mkacsinta@pismobeach.org. COMMUNITY SUPPORT Substantial community support is required for the installation of physical roadway device on either a trial or permanent basis, including the active involvement of neighborhood taskforce. A neighborhood taskforce is a group of interested persons that comes together to address a concern. Generally, members of the neighborhood taskforce must own property or reside within the affected project area. If the project area falls within a recognized Homeowners Association (HOA), then the taskforce should also include a member from that HOA. Utilizing relevant data and community input, the TSC and neighborhood taskforce will review proposed traffic calming options. Based on potential impacts of the proposed options, Engineering Staff will determine the affected project area. The neighborhood taskforce will then be responsible to distribute a petition to all households, businesses, and schools within the project area for implementation of trial and permanent installations. Such petition must be approved by staff prior to distribution. In addition, some physical devices may impact adjacent property owners more than others and may have specific installation guidelines and criteria to meet. Traffic Calming Handbook Page –2 PROJECT SCHEDULE Most projects requiring physical roadway devices will require a trial installation, which will generally occur within four (4) months from the date the plan was finalized and supported by the community or approved by the City Council. The duration of the trial will normally be six (6) months, during which time City staff will evaluate the effectiveness of the installation. Minor adjustments may be made to the installation based upon review by City staff and input from the community. Based on all relevant data and community input, the TSC will develop a proposed plan and schedule for permanent installation of the project that will be presented to the City Council for approval. Projects approved by the City Council will be programmed for installation. Installation of final projects will be dependent on the complexity of the project and the available resources for construction and ongoing maintenance of installed devices. COMMUNITY FUNDING The City has an adopted budget for the installation of minor traffic calming devices; however, projects that are not within the City’s budget or that require long-term operations and maintenance costs, may require additional community funding. Should a neighborhood choose to install a traffic calming device that is not within the City’s Budget, an assessment district may be formed as another mechanism for collecting revenue for the installation and long-term operations and maintenance costs. OUTREACH REQUIREMENTS Residents, businesses, and schools that may be affected by the outcome of traffic calming projects that involve physical features must be notified in writing of any planned actions or schedule. Projects that involve the installation of physical roadway features will normally require at least one community meeting with the households, businesses and schools in the project area. Notices for any community meeting must be distributed at least ten (10) calendar days in advance. Projects will also be coordinated with providers or emergency response services, transit services, utilities, and related services. TRAFFIC CALMING DEVICES Traffic calming consists of those traffic control devices and programs that can be implemented on a day - to-day basis to regulate, warn, guide, enforce, and educate motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists. They include standard striping and signing elements as found in the MUTCD, minor roadway design elements to improve visibility and safety, enforcement by police and parking compliance officers, and safety education programs. Approved traffic calming measures include: Traffic Safety Education Programs Striping Police Enforcement High-Visibility Signs Parking Enforcement Stop Signs Curb Markings Traffic Signage Crosswalks Signed Turn Restrictions Radar Trailer(s) Truck Restrictions Bulb outs Botts Dots or Rumble Strips Traffic Calming Handbook Page –3 ENGINEERING CURB MARKINGS Curb marking are special curb paintings that restrict or limit parking along the curb to enhance safety and/or increase visibility of pedestrians and bicyclists or provide specific parking based on an area’s parking needs. Curb marking applications include:  Red curb at pedestrian ramps  Red curb at crosswalk or intersection to increase visibility  Red curb at and/or between driveways to increase visibility  Blue curb for disabled-accessible parking  White and yellow curbs for passenger and freight loading zones  Green curb for timed parking An abundance of painted curb markings creates costly maintenance for City staff. Because of this, city policy does not recommend that the below-mentioned locations have red curb markings for no-parking areas per municipal code section 10.08.020:  Within ten feet of any intersection  Within ten feet of any fire hydrant  Directly in front of any building in which is housed firefighting apparatus belonging to the City  In any reserved space, except to take on or let off passengers or merchandise  In an intersection  In a crosswalk Considerations in evaluating painted curb requests include:  Vehicles blocking access to a driveway  Reoccurring parking citations in an area where parking is not permitted  Line of sight issues at an intersection Positive Aspects • Provide safer conditions for motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists • Easy to install Negative Aspects • Could results in loss of parking, increasing parking demand nearby • Could put an extra burden on City crews to maintain painted curbs Traffic Calming Handbook Page –4 Please Note: Any requests for no parking in the Downtown core should be taken to the City’s Parking Advisory Committee. To get on a Parking Advisory Committee agenda, please contact the Community Development Department at (805) 773-4657. TRAFFIC SIGNAGE Traffic signs may be installed to make roadway users aware of a roadway condition, to fully utilize parking capacity or to restrict vehicular traffic. Examples include:  Speed Limit Sign  Curve Warning Sign  Stop Sign  Stop Ahead Sign  Turn Restriction Sign  Parking Sign  Dead End Road Sign Considerations in evaluating traffic signage requests include:  Reoccurring citations in location  Signs meet MUTCD warrants  Narrow road with frequent U-turns  School crossings  History of accidents in the area  New Traffic Study Data Positive Aspects • Increases driver awareness or roadway conditions • Parking signage maximizes utilization of available parking • Turn restrictions can reduce cut-trough traffic • “Dead End” signs can restrict traffic U-turns Negative Aspects • Too much signage may cause drivers to “tune out” most or all signs • Signage is not self-enforcing CROSSWALKS Pedestrians may legally cross any City street, except midblock between signalized intersections or where expressly prohibited by signage. A marked crosswalk (at intersection or mid-block) may be installed to help pedestrians to cross a street. The primary function of marked crosswalks is to guide and channelize pedestrians to a preferred crossing location. Marked crosswalks are most appropriate near schools, recreational facilities, and other pedestrian generators. Consideration:  Meets MUTCD Warrants  History of collisions  Located near a school Traffic Calming Handbook Page –5 Positive Aspects • Provides centralized location for pedestrians to cross a street • Increases driver awareness of pedestrians Negative Aspects • Can provide false sense of security to pedestrians entering traffic • May require removal of parking near crosswalk RADAR SPEED DISPLAY SIGNS Radar speed display signs are a permanent version of the radar trailer (see page 11), where drivers are informed of their speeds. These signs are intended for multi-lane streets with higher speed limits and moderate volumes. Considerations:  Enforcement only effective when Police are present  Recent Lowered Speed Limit Positive Aspects • Increases Driver awareness of reduced speed limit • Can be activated only during school pick-ups and drop-off times • Educational tool Negative aspects • Added cost to install and maintain • Long-term effectiveness may be limited for everyday drivers, who are typically the motorists driving with excessive speeds STOP SIGNS AND MULTI-WAY STOP SIGNS The MUTCD states that “Stop signs should not be used for speed control.” Stop signs are intended to assign the right-of-way among motorists, pedestrians and cyclists at an intersection. Although many citizens believe that stop signs help reduce speeds on their street, numerous studies have shown that speeds are as high or higher at mid-block than those locations without stop signs. To address speeding concerns, other measures may be available. Stop Signs are installed based on the MUTCD. If a stop sign is installed and does not meet MUTCD warrants, then it cannot be enforced by the Police Department.  Section 2B.06 MUTCD Criteria for stop signs include: At intersections where a full stop is not necessary at all times, consideration should first be given to using less restrictive measures such as YIELD signs (see MUTCD Sections 2B.08 and 2B.09). The use of STOP signs on the minor-street approaches should be considered if engineering judgment indicates that a stop is always required because of one or more of the following conditions: Traffic Calming Handbook Page –6 A. The vehicular traffic volumes on the through street or highway exceed 6,000 vehicles per day; B. A restricted view exists that requires road users to stop in order to adequately observe conflicting traffic on the through street or highway; and/or C. Crash records indicate that three or more crashes that are susceptible to correction by the installation of a STOP sign have been reported within a 12-month period, or that five or more such crashes have been reported within a 2-year period. Such crashes include right-angle collisions involving road users on the minor-street approach failing to yield the right-of-way to traffic on the through street or highway.  Section 2B.07 MUTCD Criteria for multi-way stop sign include: Multi-way stop control can be useful as a safety measure at intersections if certain traffic conditions exist. Safety concerns associated with multi-way stops include pedestrians, bicyclists, and all road users expecting other road users to stop. Multi-way stop control is used where the volume of traffic on the intersecting roads is approximately equal. The restrictions on the use of STOP signs described in Section 2B.04 also apply to multi-way stop applications. Guidance: The decision to install multi-way stop control should be based on an engineering study. The following criteria should be considered in the engineering study for a multi-way STOP sign installation: A. Where traffic control signals are justified, the multi-way stop is an interim measure that can be installed quickly to control traffic while arrangements are being made for the installation of the traffic control signal. B. Five or more reported crashes in a 12-month period that are susceptible to correction by a multi-way stop installation. Such crashes include right-turn and left-turn collisions as well as right-angle collisions. C. Minimum volumes: 1. The vehicular volume entering the intersection from the major street approaches (total of both approaches) averages at least 300 vehicles per hour for any 8 hours of an average day; and 2. The combined vehicular, pedestrian, and bicycle volume entering the intersection from the minor street approaches (total of both approaches) averages at least 200 units per hour for the same 8 hours, with an average delay to minor-street vehicular traffic of at least 30 seconds per vehicle during the highest hour; but 3. If the 85th-percentile approach speed of the major-street traffic exceeds 40 mph, the minimum vehicular volume warrants are 70 percent of the values provided in Items 1 and 2. D. Where no single criterion is satisfied, but where Criteria B, C.1, and C.2 are all satisfied to 80 percent of the minimum values. Criterion C.3 is excluded from this condition. Option: Other criteria that may be considered in an engineering study include: Traffic Calming Handbook Page –7 A. The need to control left-turn conflicts; B. The need to control vehicle/pedestrian conflicts near locations that generate high pedestrian volumes; C. Locations where a road user, after stopping, cannot see conflicting traffic and is not able to negotiate the intersection unless conflicting cross traffic is also required to stop; and D. An intersection of two residential neighborhood collector (through) streets of similar design and operating characteristics where multi-way stop control would improve traffic operational characteristics of the intersection. Considerations  Meets MUTCD Warrants Positive Aspects • Reduce right-of-way conflicts at an intersection • Increases opportunities for pedestrians to cross the roadway • May discourage cut-through traffic Negative Aspects • Unwarranted stop signs increase unnecessary delay for the main approached • Pedestrian safety compromised if motorist do not comply • Penalizes all motorist on the main street, even those obeying the speed limit • Potential traffic diversion onto other streets • May increase speeds min-block, as drivers attempt to make up perceived “lost-time” from stopping • Potential increase in noise and air pollution in the vicinity of the stop from added stops/starts More MUTCD Stop sign information is available at https://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov/htm/2009/part2/part2b.htm Traffic Calming Handbook Page –8 Current traffic counts and collision data can be found on the websites listed below. Should a street require a new traffic study, arrangements can be made with the Engineering Division by emailing Engineering@pismobeach.org or calling (805) 773-4656. 2016 Citywide Transportation Model and Circulation Study https://accesspismo.pismobeach.org/WebLink/DocView.aspx?id=201357&dbid=0&repo=Laserfiche 2016 Citywide Transportation Model and Circulation Study Appendix https://accesspismo.pismobeach.org/WebLink/DocView.aspx?id=201359&dbid=0&repo=Laserfiche TRUCK RESTRICTIONS Trucks over 8,000 pounds are restricted on streets specified under Pismo Beach municipal code section 10.12 Posting a sign with weight limits may help reduce cut-through traffic of commercial vehicles not doing business within that area. Considerations:  Residential streets are seeing high truck traffic  Trucks are using residential streets to cut through traffic Positive Aspects • Redirects commercial traffic onto main streets • Reduces noise, air pollutions and street degradation due to trucks on residential streets Negative Aspects • Not self-enforcing • Does not apply to local trucks doing business in the area BOTT DOTS AND RUMBLE STRIPS Botts’ dots and raised reflectors, or raised pavement markers, are small bumps lining the centerline or edge line of a roadway. Botts dots can be arranged into a rectangular array across the roadway, creating a rumble strip, which causes a rumbling sensation to drivers as the cross. These can reduce travel speeds but also increase roadway noise considerably. Consequently, rumble strips are not ideal for residential neighborhoods. Considerations:  Observed speeding traffic  Data showing an increase in moving violations  Signage and neighborhood education not helping Positives Aspects • Slows speeding traffic • May decrease volume of vehicles • Minimal cost to install Traffic Calming Handbook Page –9 Negative Aspects • Increase in traffic noise in the vicinity MEDIANS Medians are raised islands in the center of the roadway that separate traffic directions. Medians are used on wide streets to narrow the travel lanes and ease pedestrian crossings. The Fire Department must approve this type of feature prior to being discussed by the TSC, as it may limit accessibility and response time Considerations:  Data showing an increase in incident reports  Data showing an increase in moving violations  Need to beautify area  Need for a barrier between travel lanes  Location within a commercial or mixed use area Positive Aspects • Narrowed Travel Lanes can slow vehicle speeds • Provides shorter distance for pedestrians to cross travel lanes • Breaks up driver’s sight-line • Opportunity for landscaping and visual enhancements Negative Aspects • May interrupt driveway access and result in U-turns • Likely loss of parking • High cost to construct and maintain BLUB-OUTS Blub-outs narrow the street width at intersections, creating a shorter and safer pedestrian crossing while encouraging drivers to slow down. These may contain special paving or landscaping and are generally used at intersections where parking is already restricted. The Fire Department must approve this type of feature prior to being discussed by the TSC, as it may limit accessibility and response time. Considerations:  Data showing an increase in incident reports  Data showing an increase in moving violations  Need to narrow a wide roadway  Location within a commercial or mixed use area Traffic Calming Handbook Page –10 Positive Aspects • Pedestrian crossing distance is reduced • Narrowed roadway section may contribute to reduction of speeds • Breaks up driver’s sight-line • Opportunity for landscaping and visual enhancements Negative Aspects • May reduce visibility for cyclists who are less visible to turning and cross traffic • May require partial or total loss of parking • High cost to construct and maintain • May increase emergency response times • Debris can collect in gutter and crosswalk in detached bulb-out installations • Care should be taken to keep motorists from hitting bulb-outs ENFORCEMENT Police Enforcement Police Enforcement entails the presence of police to monitor speeds and other inappropriate driving behavior and issue citations when necessary. This method is used as an attempt to increase driver compliance on streets where there is adequate signage posted. It is most applicable on streets with documented speeding problems or notable stop sign/red light violations. It can also be used during the learning period when new devices or restriction are first implemented. For requests for police enforcement, contact the Police Dispatch (Non-Emergence calls) at (805) 773-2208. Considerations:  Increase in moving violations  Observed speeding  Recent change in roadway speed  New location for a stop sign Positive Aspects • Effective while officer is present at the location • Allows Police to collect data for future use on traffic calming measures • Can target specific times deemed to be most problematic • Can be implemented on short notice • Targets violators without affecting normal traffic Negative Aspects • It is a temporary measure • Enforcement may be delayed and/or limited, due to police availability and other policing duties Traffic Calming Handbook Page –11 RADAR TRAILER A mobile radar display trailer informs drivers of their speeds. The radar trailer is applicable on any street where speeding is a problem and there is adequate roadside capacity to accommodate the trailer without creating a hazard. Considerations:  Observed speeding traffic  Enforcement only effective when Police are present Positive Aspects • Educational tool • Good public relations for neighborhoods • Effective for temporary speed reduction Negative Aspects • Not self-enforcing • Duration of effectiveness is limited • May require temporary loss of parking The City has limited trailers that are available for traffic calming throughout the City of Pismo Beach. If you are interested in having a radar trailer parked on a local street, please contact the City’s Police Department at 805-773-2208. Due to limited supplies, the radar trailers move locations every two weeks based on demand. Parking Enforcement Parking Enforcement entails the presence of police to issue citations for non-compliant parking throughout the City. This action is typically implemented when vehicles are repeatedly parking in non- compliant areas that may or may not require striping or signage. For parking enforcement, contact the Police Dispatch (non-emergence calls) at (805) 773-2208. For Parking enforcement in the downtown core, contact the Parking Division at (805) 773-7451. Considerations:  Vehicles blocking driveway aprons  Vehicles parking in a illegal spaces  Vehicles parking in areas listed in Section 10.08.020 of the City’s Municipal Code o Within ten feet of any intersection o Within ten feet of any fire hydrant o Directly in front of any building in which is housed fire fighting apparatus belonging to the City o In any reserved space, except to take on or let off passengers or merchandise o In an intersection o In a crosswalk Positive Aspects • Effective while officers are present at the location • Can be targeted to specific time periods that are deemed to be most problematic Traffic Calming Handbook Page –12 • Can reduce maintenance costs by illuminating the need for additional signs or striping Negative Aspects • It is a temporary measure • Enforcement may be delayed and/or limited, due to police availability and other policing duties CITY OF PISMO BEACHTRAFFIC SAFETY COMMITEEE760 Mattie Road, Pismo Beach, CA 93449 Phone: (805) 773-4656 Email: Mkacsinta@pismobeach.org TRAFFIC SAFETY COMMITTEE REQUEST FORM Please Print Date: Name: Address: Email: Daytime Telephone Number: ( ) 1-Way Stop Control 2-Way Stop Control 3-Way Stop Control 4-Way Stop Control Traffic Signal Other STOP CONTROL At the intersection of Reason: Please Note: The City of Pismo Beach DOES NOT install stop signs to control speeding. Speeding is an enforcement issue. If this is your concern, please contact the City's Police Department at (805)773-2208. No Parking / No Stopping Time Restricted Parking Zone Loading Zone Other RESTRICTED PARKING On: between / at / near Reason: Requested Sign: Location: Reason: SIGN REQUEST Request: Reason: OTHER REQUEST Engineering Staff Use Only Sent by: on Please turn page over for additional information Y OU MAY USE ONE OF THESE SAMPLE MAP INTERSECTIONS. B E SURE TO INDICATE STREET NAMES. Additional Information: (ATTACH ADDITIONAL SHEETS IF NECESSARY) Please Note: 9 The City of Pismo Beach, as a practice, does NOT install speed bumps on City-maintained roads. 9 The City of Pismo Beach does not install “Children at Play” signs on a public roadway. 9 This request is being taken to the Traffic Safety Committee, which meets on a quarterly basis. For information regarding the Traffic Safety Committee's next meeting, please contact the Engineering Division at 805-773-4656. 9 When there is no speed limit posted on a road, the Basic Speed Law as stated in Section 22350 of the California Vehicle Code applies. Speeding is an enforcement issue. Past experience has shown the most effective tool to curtail speed violators is active law enforcement. Should you observe habitual speed violators in your community, it is recommended you contact our local Police Department. Information relating to vehicle description, time of day, direction of travel, and license plate number is very useful for the Police Department in prioritizing limited manpower and resources. Rev. 10/19/2021 Please email this form and any additional information to MKacsinta@pismobeach.org Thank you for your interest in traffic safety. Printed Name: Signature: Date: