County Council Meeting - 2/7/2012

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The options were presented to the Council by Anne Laurent, Acting Assistant County Administrator. She described the "Zimmerman Option with Roundabout" as a compromise solution. Details are presented here. Those wishing a summary of the outcomes of the 2011-2012 discussions may proceed to the next page.

Public comment by some 50 residents of the County was numerically strongly in favor of the Zimmerman Option. Reasons for favoring the option included...

The supporters of the 4- and 5-lane PB options were smaller in number and were not able to come up with such a creative list of "advantages". Their comments included...

After the public comment,

Councilor Wismer moved, seconded by Councilor Berting, that Council direct staff to relay to the NM Department of Transportation the County's preference to move forward with the following design criteria, subject to such minor modifications as may be needed to implement best engineering practices that do not change the basic features of the design, for NM502/Trinity Drive section between DP Road and Airport Road:

Motion Option 1 - NM502 Hybrid Design with a Roundabout at Central described as follows: one lane in each direction with widened medians at the intersections of Airport Road and Tewa Loop that are designed for a travel speed of 35 miles per hour; west of Tewa Loop NM502 will be one lane each direction with a center median for landscaping, left turn bays, and pedestrian refuge; up to two pedestrian hybrid beacons (HAWKs) will be installed between the Tewa Loop and Canyon Road intersections; the Canyon Road intersections will be reconfigured to increase deflection to reduce vehicle speeds; between Canyon Road and Central Ave or where determined necessary by the NM Department of Transportation, two east bound lanes from Central will merge to one east bound lane; the center median will continue along with one west bound lane; the Central Ave and 4th Street intersections with NM502 will be combined into one intersection controlled by a roundabout; west of Central and 4th, NM502 will have two east bound lanes, a center median, and one west bound lane; the DP Road intersection will be reconfigured using existing right-of-way to be more of a 90 degree intersection with NM502; and west of the DP Road intersection, NM502 will connect to the existing road section of two lanes east bound, a center median, and two lanes west bound; sidewalks will be included on both sides of NM502 from Tewa Loop to DP Road. This option is to be modified to incorporate bicycle lanes or bicycle paths where it is physically viable and cost-effectively feasible to so do in the opinion of the NM Department of Transportation and Los Alamos County.

During discussion of the motion, the Councilors asked questions of representatives of the TAC, the NMDOT, and the County staff. Responses elicited included...

As the Council members discussed the motion, two comments especially lodged in my mind...

The motion passed 6 –1. Councilors Wismer, Berting, Rodgers, Selvage, Israelevitz, and Stover voted in favor; Councilor Chiravalle opposed.

The Council thanked all participants in the study, discussion, and selection of options for NM502.

From here, the NMDOT and Los Alamos County Department of Public Works will gather additional engineering information and evaluate the plan further.

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