As we noted a couple months ago in a slightly different context, “‘arterial’ doesn’t mean ‘open somebody’s arteries’.” Many people who have to deal daily with 35th SW (one small section shown above), whether as pedestrians or drivers, bike riders or transit users, would probably agree. Two recent accidents have put the 35th SW problems back in the spotlight – the one that killed 85-year-old Oswald Clement weekend before last, and the one that shut down a section of the road this past Friday night. The High Point Neighborhood Association has been lobbying for safety improvements on this busy straightaway and hopes to gain some traction from two high-profile visits this week: Mayor Nickels will be in High Point this morning to celebrate the development’s recent award, and City Council President Nick Licata is coming Thursday night for a walking tour focused on the safety concerns. The group’s been working on these issues for quite some time, and here’s where they stand and what they are trying to get the city to do:
The group says it’s been promised some speed-radar signs on 35th, but that’s not enough. They want a full light at the intersection of 35th & Raymond (map), an area where traffic will continue to increase as the High Point development keeps building out. They also want a “road diet” (explanation here) between Juneau and Myrtle on 35th, so that turns can be made safely, and longer crossing times at the pedestrian crosswalks that exist in that area. In addition to those 35th-specific requests, the HPNA is working to get a variety of other safety improvements within the HP area itself, east of 35th. Its next meeting is 6 pm Thursday at the High Point Library, right after the walking tour with Council President Licata.