The City of Columbus spent $150,000 to do a study on Parsons to find out if traffic needs to slowed with more traffic signals and crosswalks added.
Here's the blurb from the project:
The City of Columbus has commissioned a traffic study for Parsons Avenue from Livingston Avenue to the railroad overpass south of Hosack Street. The purpose of the study is to make recommendations for traffic pattern changes that will:
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Reduce accidents and augment driver and pedestrian safety
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Improve parking access and safety
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Maximize Parsons Avenue business success
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Calm traffic and enhance livability and commerce
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Promote walking and bicycling
These recommendations could include improved traffic signals and timing, reconfigured pavement markings, signage and more.
Really now? Why is it that everything this city does exists in a vacuum? Has no one from the Public Service Department heard of the Short North? Maybe former ODOT employee and current Director Mark Kelsey should have put aside his love for Polaris Fashion Place (which he expressed after a City Council meeting) and taken a trip here to see that the Parsons Ave study was already successfully done and infrastructure implemented long ago. High Street in southern half of the Short North is a mirror image of Parsons south of Livingston: two on-street parking lanes, two travel lanes, and one middle turn lane. The only minor difference in the layout of the roads would be in the lane widths.
The improvements on Parsons should simply mimic what has already been done in the Short North: more traffic signals with crosswalks near denser commercial buildings so that there's a maximum of 850 feet between traffic signals (or the equivalent of the longest distance between traffic signals in the Short North from Starr to 4th Ave, which is arguably too far) for slower traffic, pedestrian safety and access, and signage and sharrows for cyclists who will benefit from the calmed traffic. We already know this study is unnecessary because we most certainly are not talking about making N High in the Short North into what Parsons is like today with its long stretches of uninterrupted roads with few traffic signals and crosswalks for pedestrians. A sign that additional traffic signals/slower traffic are needed may be indicated by the fact that a bike rack in front of Hal & Al's has been knocked down by drivers speeding and veering onto the edge of the sidewalk more than once in just a matter of months. But maybe we should do another study before doing something as rash as making Parsons pedestrian-friendly and study that study just to be on the safe side.
I already made a pedestrian-unfriendly map including stretches of Parsons where there aren't enough traffic signals and pedestrians are expected to walk a ridiculous distance to the next signal. When the city installs additional signals you can be guaranteed 100% they will be placed where I marked the need for them: E Sycamore to E Whittier, E Whittier to E Stewart, Thurman to Hanford, and the worst offender from E Markison to E Innis (over 1/3 of a mile). If only the city had contacted me, I would have saved them tens of thousands. All that needs to be studied is the traffic signal timing for current and new signals.