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Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program

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The City of Auburn is dedicated to improving the quality and livability of Auburn’s residential neighborhoods. The objectives of the neighborhood traffic calming program are to: 
  • Improve safety for all road users, especially pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Reduce speeds in neighborhoods so that most cars drive at or below the posted speed limit.
  • Discourage cut-through vehicle traffic and to encourage drivers to use streets that are designed for higher traffic volumes.
  • Educate residents through traffic safety awareness and outreach.
  • Meet Auburn’s equity goals with a proactive approach to ensure all neighborhoods are evaluated and encourage residents to participate in the process.

In 2007, the Auburn City Council adopted the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program to assist residents and the City in developing solutions to speeding and other traffic safety concerns on residential streets. The original program was focused on responding to complaints of speeding on a residential streets. Where appropriate and desired by the residents on the street, the program would install speed cushions intended to “calm” or slow down the traffic on the street. In 2020, the program was put on hold because of budget reductions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2022, The City of Auburn is launching a reimagined version of the neighborhood traffic calming program. The intent of the revised program is to proactively identify and address speeding issues in a whole neighborhood instead of waiting for residents to complain about a specific location on one street in the neighborhood. Each year the City will identify a neighborhood for evaluation, study, outreach, and potential implementation of traffic calming measures. Unfortunately, this approach does mean that the program may not address all speeding concerns received from residents each year if the area of concern is outside the neighborhood being addressed in the current year. Regardless, the City will continue conducting speed studies where speeding issues are reported and the information will be provided to the Auburn Police Department for consideration in enforcement prioritization and planning and will also be utilized to help identify and prioritize neighborhoods for future years. 

More about the program:

According to the Institute of Transportation Engineers, traffic calming “…reduces automobile speeds or volumes as a means of improving the quality of life in residential areas, increasing walking safety and making bicycling more comfortable.”

Auburn’s neighborhood traffic calming program is intended for residential neighborhoods. It is not intended for commercial/industrial areas or busier streets that are meant to carry more traffic.

Some examples of tools that will help the City meet the objectives:

Education:

  • Informational letters or flyers
  • Temporary signs for awareness
  • Magazine articles and social media posts

Enforcement:

  • Police Emphasis Patrols to discourage speeding

Engineering:

  • If appropriate, identification, design, and implementation of physical traffic calming treatment improvements in the neighborhood, to be implemented as funding is available.

Evaluation:

  • Post implementation neighborhood survey
Proactive and Areawide Approach

The program intent is to evaluate a complete neighborhood area each year instead of working on one street at a time, which can sometime just shift cut-through and speeding traffic from one neighborhood street to the next. The program approach includes reaching out to residents in the selected neighborhood to ask where they see issues with cars driving too fast or using the residential road as a cut-through. The neighborhood residents will also be given an opportunity to provide feedback on the City’s recommended traffic calming treatments prior to them being built. We believe this approach will be effective in addressing neighborhood concerns with speeding and cut-through traffic.  

We will continue document speeding complaints we receive in neighborhoods throughout the City and conduct speed studies as needed. The information will be shared with the Auburn Police Department to help prioritize and plan enforcement activities and will also be used to help identify and prioritize neighborhoods to be included in this program. 

Localized Neighborhood Speeding Issues

Complaints are sometimes received regarding speeding in neighborhoods where most of the traffic on the streets is likely from residents or their guests. An example would be traffic on a cul-de-sac or dead-end street, and in smaller neighborhoods with only one entrance. 

When resources are available, the program will address these situations on a case-by-case basis with the following:

1. Neighborhood education and outreach about traffic safety
2. Placement of temporary educational signs
3. Police outreach to a specific reported offender


Equity

To ensure affected populations are invited to learn about and help decide on the final projects, and to meet Title VI requirements, staff will research population data to ensure that outreach and education material is provided in the languages most spoken in the selected area, and research how to best engage with the residents. Material will also be made available in other languages as requested by residents.

Related Documents

Contact

For additional information, please email [email protected].


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The information will be used to inform future planning for this program.