Our City is contemplating a new traffic pattern. Here is the setup: We have two parallel five lane (two + center turn + two) arterials one carrying about 25,000 ADT and the other about 15,000 ADT. The each serve a major employer on the edge of town, so we have large am and pm peaks. The two arterials are split by our downtown area that contains a minor street down the middle. One arterial is bordered by small lot single-family residential, and the other arterial is bordered by a riverfront park system.
We are contemplating a one-way couplet concept, and have a transportation consultant studying the idea. We recognize all of the downfalls of traditional one-way streets in pedestrian downtown areas, such as choices between auto mobility at the expense of pedestrian mobility. Here is where we are going to try something different.
We are going to narrow the arterials from five lanes to three. We think we can do this without sacrificing capacity, and at the same time we can widen sidewalks, increase landscaping/street trees, streetscaping, on-street parking, loading zones, curb bulb outs, etc...
In short, we think there are some important urban design features we can accomplish through this action. The question is this: are those features enough of a benefit to warrant a switch to a one-way couplet concept?