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Thread: Secondary accesses and cul-de-sacs

  1. #1
    Cyburbian jmf's avatar
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    Secondary accesses and cul-de-sacs

    Just wondering if anyone has any limits on the number of lots which may be created before a secondary access is provided? This could be for either a manufactured home park or a regular subdivision.

    For those of you without a limit on the number of units, do you have a limit on the length of a cul-de-sac?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    15 and it's always a topic of hot debate

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    Cyburbian solarstar's avatar
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    75 units requires a secondary access. Cul-de-sac length is 1500 ft.

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    We allow up to 25 units on one access, 50 units maximum if all units are fire sprinkled and a 500 foot maximum cul-de-sac length. A variance to the maximum length have been granted when all homes are sprinkled. The Fire Department would really like to have all homes sprinkled if they could. They see it as buying them a few more minutes to repond to a situation.

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    Cyburbian b3nr's avatar
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    Ooh thats interesting. I would like to know, if the justification for these policies is, utilities and fire acces, or pedestrian movement? Maybe both of course...

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    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by b3nr View post
    Ooh thats interesting. I would like to know, if the justification for these policies is, utilities and fire acces, or pedestrian movement? Maybe both of course...
    arbitrary and possibly capricious...

  7. #7
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    We have a maximum length of cul-de-sac (1200') and a minimum length of cul-de-sac (450'), but no hard and fast standard as to when a secondary access is required. Generally, given our soils based lot sizing for 80% of town, the number of homes on a cul-de-sac limits itself.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    We have no limit on the number of units -- that's controlled by the density allowed by the comp plan and zoning -- and a maximum cul-de-sac length of 1,000-feet.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jmf View post
    For those of you without a limit on the number of units, do you have a limit on the length of a cul-de-sac?
    I've worked in 2 towns with a maximum length of 600' which in both cases was rarely enforced.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian b3nr's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by luckless pedestrian View post
    arbitrary and possibly capricious...
    Hahah!

    Wow. So effectively your allowed an unspecified lenght of cul-de-sac, with an unspecified number of units, before a secondary access, which has no real basis, is required for an unspecified reason :-P

    The point of a minimum lenght intruiges me...

  11. #11
    Another alternative is using a performance standard. I like the old Buck's County Planning Commission (PA) model standards which requires a secondary access at 200+ ADT, or 20 single family homes.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    The town I used to work for had a maximum length of 700 feet for a cul-de-sac - it was justified by the reasoning that a 700' hose was the longest the fire dept had.

    A town next door used 600 feet, but I don't know why that was the length.
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  13. #13
    Cyburbian b3nr's avatar
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    Indulge me if you will...

    In UK planning cul-de-sacs are a little out of fashion, again i have lost the recent report which outlines why, but they are not seen as 'inclusive' and of course add distance for those cycling or walking. The interesting thing to come out of this debate was re-affirming the advantages of cul-de-sacs, they are secure, children can play in safety from traffic, they are quiet etc. Maximum lengths are dictated by national policy, which does not specify a length but rather highlights the need for pedestrian permeability and possibly local design guidance in larger authorities.

    This is quite interesting, you can see the difference in UK and US suburbs, the layouts are startlingly similar, its just the scale that that is drastically different!

    http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&z=14...,0.080338&om=1

    http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=e...,0.027122&om=1

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