VDOT News - Fredericksburg
Darragh Frye 540-899-4119
June 7, 2018
IMPROVEMENTS CREATE SIGNIFICANT CUTS IN WAIT TIMES AT HARRISON ROAD INTERSECTION
Delays decreased significantly after new lanes open in Spotsylvania County
FREDERICKSBURG, Va. ˗˗ In October, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) finished construction of new turn lanes, travel lanes and traffic signal equipment at the Route 1 and Harrison Road intersection in Spotsylvania County. Since then, wait times have been cut almost in half or better for motorists driving through this intersection during peak travel times.
“Spot improvements at intersections can deliver tremendous benefits to communities, and the Route 1 and Harrison Road project is an example of how small changes can improve safety and predictability for drivers,” said VDOT Fredericksburg District Administrator Marcie Parker.
Before and after
VDOT staff performed an analysis to compare travel conditions before and after the project, which included a review of the traffic patterns and signal timings. Overall, drivers have experienced an average 61 percent drop in wait times at the intersection during the peak afternoon hour. On weekday mornings, average wait times in the peak hour have been reduced by 34 percent.
Eastbound Harrison Road traffic has experienced the largest delay reduction. On weekday afternoons, the average time to clear the traffic signal fell from 229 seconds to 39 seconds, which is a reduction of 83 percent.
With more vehicles traveling through the intersection on each signal cycle, drivers are experiencing faster trips with fewer delays.
The analysis focused on the morning and afternoon peak hours, when traffic volumes are the heaviest. The morning peak hour is defined as 7:15-8:15 a.m. The afternoon peak hour is 4:45-5:45 p.m.
Improvements and benefits
The $22 million project significantly widened the intersection to create space for new through lanes and dual turn lanes on several approaches. Several existing turn lanes were also lengthened. Frontage roads connecting at the intersection were closed to improve safety, and side street traffic was redirected to enter at new locations. Sidewalks were added and a 10-foot shared use path was built on the north side of Harrison Road between Route 1 and the new Wallace Lane connector road. Pedestrian crossing equipment was added on each corner. New lighting was also installed to provide better visibility for all travelers.
On average, 24,600 vehicles pass through the Harrison Road intersection daily, according to a 2016 VDOT traffic count.
This project was funded with a combination of local, state and federal funds. Spotsylvania County contributed $4.2 million as the local contribution for this transportation improvement.
“This is a great success story for Spotsylvania County residents,” said Spotsylvania County Administrator Mark Taylor.
Additional findings of the analysis:
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