Some citizens who live on northern Broad Street are calling on the city to honor a 1995 pledge to consider blocking the street at Stadium Drive.
New City Manager Tom Bonfield put the matter on his office's to-do list after Kelly Mieszkalski, one of the residents, spoke at the city council work session last week and presented a list of 13 accidents at the Broad-Carver street intersection.
"We've had a number of neighborhood concerns regarding accidents, traffic, trash and the level of noise," she said.
In November 1995, the council resolved to "initiate the process for blocking Broad Street north of Stadium Drive" upon completion of Stadium Drive's extension between Broad and Kirkwood Drive. The resolution resulted from nearby residents' concern over increased traffic due to the Northpointe shopping center between Broad Street and Guess Road.
The blocking was intended to direct traffic onto Stadium Drive, a wide thoroughfare connecting on the east to Duke Street and Roxboro Road, and on the north with Carver Street and Horton Road. The resolution also called for blocking or "otherwise restricting vehicular traffic" on several other neighborhood streets.
According to the city's assistant transportation manager Wes Parham, his department contacted several other city and county departments and utility companies in 2005, asking response to the proposed blocking. Four expressed opposition, one favored blocking and five expressed no opinion either way. Most opposed the idea. In a memorandum to Bonfield, Parham wrote that blocking Broad "would force the re-routing of through traffic to adjacent city streets, including Shaftsbury Street to the west and Birmingham Avenue to the east." However, according to the 1995 resolution, Birmingham was to be blocked and Shaftsbury blocked or restricted.
According to Parham's memo, the section of Broad Street proposed for blocking carried 6,000 cars per day in 1994, before the shopping center was built, and 6,600 in 2005. Mieszkalski said the 6,600 figure represents a traffic count from 2003, and actual traffic now is much higher.
"There's more traffic on Broad now than there was before Stadium" was completed, she said. "Stadium was supposed to redirect traffic, [but] traffic isn't using it."
She asked the council to hear the neighborhood's side and consider enacting its resolution.
"We'd like the chance, given this is our neighborhood," she said.