by Sam Hieb
Back in July, I took a drive down Friendly Avenue and reported on construction of the bottleneck the City of Greensboro is creating between Holden and Westridge. Now that the bottleneck’s almost finished, the N&R takes a look:
Yes, without a doubt, the reworked version of West Friendly Avenue will be wide enough for two lanes of traffic each way, the city Department of Transportation says.
As the $7.2 million project nears completion after two years of construction, residents along a 1.4-mile stretch of West Friendly Avenue and surrounding neighborhoods are pondering some pretty basic questions, such as: Doesn’t it look a tad narrow?
“It’s an optical illusion with all the construction going on,” said Adam Fischer, manager of GDOT’s engineering division. “It’s down to one travel lane right now with barrels, and it’s not fully paved or marked.”
…In interviews with residents Monday and Tuesday, several asked, why build the medians instead of just adding a fifth open lane for turns?
Others said they’ll have to make U-turns at median openings and backtrack to their homes, which they think is just as risky as sitting in a travel lane waiting to turn.
Still others questioned whether the turning bays will be long enough to hold all the left-turning cars, leaving the last in line protruding into the travel lane and causing the same type of accident the new design was created to end.
A wider road with a turn lane for one of Greensboro’s main arteries. That’s obviously is a plan that’s either too basic or not trendy enough for city transportation planners. Or not expensive enough.