Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Building safer streets in Langley City

Langley City is one of the original commercial hubs in the Fraser Valley. Downtown Langley was built-out around an old Interurban station.

While the Langley City’s core has been around for over 100 years, the City experienced rapid urbanization from the 1970s into the 1980s. As a result, there are many streets with 20 meter right-of-ways.

The Langley Bypass, 200th Street, and some sections of Fraser Highway are the only roads that approach 1,000 vehicles per hour in one direction during peak travel periods. The rest of the wide roads have light traffic. As a result, speeding is a major concern in my community.

Traffic volumes on Langley City roads From the City of Langley Master Transportation Plan.

With 20 metre right-of-ways on many of our major streets, we have the opportunity to build complete streets that are safe for all people no matter the mode. For example, 203rd Street was once planned to be a 4-lane mini-freeway. It is now being traffic calmed with improved cycling and walking infrastructure.

I snapped the following pictures of one of the major streets in Langley City, 53rd Avenue, that recently saw a new safer crosswalk and bike lanes installed.

New crosswalk and bike lane on 53rd Avenue.

New curb extension on 53rd Avenue.

Fundamentally Langley City is a walking city. This is why the updated master transportation plan dedicates 50% of its capital investment plan to pedestrian infrastructure. Only 9% of the capital investment plan is dedication to road expansion.

Langley City is in the enviable position of having wide streets with low motor vehicle traffic volumes. This makes it relatively easy to build complete streets that are safe and inviting for everyone.


Anonymous said...

Hi Nathan would you say the two current options being considered for 203rd Street would qualify as being "complete streets"? Do you have any idea which option will be picked?

Nathan Pachal said...

There has been some major changes to the original designs. I'm still waiting for the final results. Should know in a week.