A year has passed since 14-year-old Alexia Hyneman was killed crossing Monroe Drive on her bike - on her way home from a Grady High School event. Her father spoke to 11Alive this week about his frustration with the intersection that took his daughter’s life (link to story).
When we spoke with Thomas this week, we were impressed again with his commitment to making streets safer for others, so other families won’t have to endure such a tragedy.
Immediately after the fatal crash, the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and PEDS partnered to ask the city to make rapid safety improvements to the intersection of 10th and Monroe (link to requests presented to city - an update on the status of those requests is at the bottom of this post.)
While some were made fairly quickly - extending the time for pedestrians to cross Monroe, and adding an "all red" signal phase in which all cars are stopped and people on foot and bike are the only ones in the intersection - there is more to be done to make Monroe/Boulevard a safe street for students, residents, and commuters.
Your voice is critical to ensure these needed public safety changes. Attend the public meeting Tuesday, February 28th (the first meeting, in fall 2016, was a community listening session).
WHEN: Tuesday, February 28, 2017, from 6 – 8 p.m.
WHERE: Big Bethel AME Church
220 Auburn Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30303
Review proposed solutions, advocate for safe streets, and help our city make the changes needed. Creating a consistent bicycle-safe street will probably require a “road diet,” where one travel lane is converted into bike lanes.
We need you there.
Help Atlanta residents and leaders prioritize people's safety over speed.
Read more about why the Virginia-Highland Civic Association wants you to support a road diet on Monroe Drive. (Thank you to Jenifer Keenan, VHCA President for making the case for safety on Monroe Drive.)
In addition to advocating for changes on the street, the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition is working with Grady High School students, parents, and teachers to create a bike club on campus. Students want to organize and educate their peers for safer biking and we want to help! Contact email@example.com for more information.
ABC and PEDS' Requested actions and status updates
|Change walk signals from pedestrian-activated to “fixed-time”||Completed February 2016Crossing signals light up automatically, instead of being push button activated.In addition, a “Smart Walk” pedestrian detection system was installed in summer 2016 to extend the walk phase if someone is in the crossing to the BeltLine when the light is changing.|
|Immediate||Reduce wait time and increase crossing time for people on foot and bike crossing Monroe||Completed May 2016Reduce the signal cycle lengths from 140 seconds to 120 seconds during the AM and PM peak periodsReduce midday, off-peak and weekend cycle lengths from 120 seconds to 100 seconds per cycleImplement pre- and post-peak period timing plans with increased pedestrian walk times for crosswalks crossing Monroe Drive.|
|Immediate||Stop and start northbound and southbound traffic on Monroe Drive at the same time to reduce confusion about which lanes of traffic have green||Not yet addressedThis would require elimination of the green turn arrow from Monroe turning left / westbound onto 10th.|
|Immediate||Accelerate start date for Monroe Drive Complete Streets project||In progressTwo Renew Atlanta projects were combined (Monroe and Boulevard) to provide more resources for the Complete Streets corridor. Meeting to review design options February 28, 2017.|
|6 month - 1 year||Enlarge crosswalk width, with separate space for cyclists and pedestrians and separated eastbound and westbound cyclists.Restripe/align crossing at 10th and Monroe intersection so that cyclists ride directly between the Eastside trail and the 10th Street cycletrack, and no longer share the crosswalk, ramps and sidewalk with people who are walking.||Meeting to review design options February 28, 2017|
|6 month - 1 year||Install audible signal (ticking + voice) at 10th and Monroe||Completed summer 2016|
|6 month - 1 year||Install Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacons and median refuge island on 10th Street at driveway at Grady High School.||Funded with impact fees; Renew Atlanta will manage implementation|
|6 month - 1 year||Add scramble phase to signal (“exclusive pedestrian phase”)||Completed April 2016Added “No right on red” at all approaches to intersection and “Don’t block the box” markings and signs|
|Improve street lighting at 10th Street and Monroe Drive, including the BeltLine intersection||Meeting to review design options February 28, 2017|
|1-3 year improvements||Implement Complete Streets project to make it safe and predictable for all pedestrians and cyclists. Bicycle lanes, safe crossing treatments, median refuge islands and Rectangular Rapid Flash Beacon.||Meeting to review design options February 28, 2017|
|Long-term improvements||Realign 10th Street / Kanuga or Virginia Ave to eliminate need for eastbound drivers on 10th to turn right and then left to travel further east||Meeting to review design options February 28, 2017|