Motorists may soon find their travels through Long Beach bumpier in some parts, but smoother in others, while pedestrians will see more clearly where to cross at intersections.
This spring the City of Long Beach plans to install more speed bumps, repave some streets and use more visible stripes to mark crosswalks and stop lines.
Kevin Mulligan, the commission of public works, said traffic studies will be conducted on West End streets to determine if they warrant speed “humps,” which are flatter, removable speed bumps.
“There is a whole procedure in place to evaluate the average speed on roads to put down the speed humps,” Mulligan said.
Last summer and fall the city studied a couple of single-lane West End streets and found that one of them, Vermont Street, didn’t warrant the humps.
Mulligan said some streets are not candidates for the humps — including Ohio, New York and Maryland avenues — due to the type of vehicles that use such streets, such as emergency vehicles and school buses, or to their lower volume of traffic.
City officials have dicussed putting the humps on Georgia and Minnesota avenues, and are now evaluating these streets.
The city will also look to get signed agreement from residents who would have the humps installed right outside their homes.
“In other communities there’s been clamoring for speed humps, but once you put them down the folks are not too happy with the trucks or vehicles going over them and making noise,” Mulligan explained.
Some West End streets already have speed bumps and humps. They are put down in April and removed in November before snowplows hit the streets.
Meanwhile, just as speed humps will go down on some streets this spring, so will tape-like striping and paint to mark crosswalks and stop lines at traffic lights.
“It’s highly visible striping and costs a lot more [than paint], but it will last longer, about three to five years,” Mulligan said about the new product.
These new features will appear at intersections in the West End and throughout the city, particularly where new stop signs have been posted.
“It makes out streets safer and it beautifies the area,” said Rick Hoffman, president of the West End Neighbors Civic Association, at the organization's March 23 meeting.
The city plans to install crosswalks on East Broadway at Edwards Boulevard, and New York state would pay up to 95 percent of the work, Mulligan said. He also noted that the city might get a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency that would allow the city to designate a biking lane on its streets.
Among the streets to undergo reconstruction this spring is Illinois Avenue, from West Park Avenue to West Beech Street. If the project is delayed, however, it will commence in the fall, after the busy summer season, Mulligan said.
Other streets currently in the design stage are , all in the Canals neighborhood, and the 600 block of West Market Street.
Mulligan also said that National Grid will soon start work on Michigan Street, ripping up the street between West Park Avenue and West Beech Street, and once that work is completed the city will repave that section of road.