The reason for this study is to address the growing concern over pedestrian safety and quality of life along CTH JJ from CTH A to STH 55 located in Outagamie County at the northern fringe of the Fox Cities.
Retrofitting rural highways to better meet the needs of the developing area is becoming a huge concern to counties, cities and towns as they try to meet the needs of their citizens. Outagamie County, the City of Appleton and the Town of Grand Chute are trying to do just that through the CTH JJ Corridor Study.
The CTH JJ corridor study was initiated by the North Fox Cities Safe Trails And Recreation Supporters (North STARS), an advocacy group of over 120 members dedicated to creating safe trails and recreation for bicycle and pedestrian users. North STARS introduced a petition with 669 signatures to officials in the City of Appleton, the Town of Grand Chute, and Outagamie County to encourage them in seeking a joint solution to the problems on CTH JJ. The East Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (ECWRPC) was asked, as part of their technical assistance program, to study the corridor for recommendations to improve the safety of bicycle and pedestrians along the corridor.
To evaluate the corridor ECWRPC used a Road Safety Audit (RSA) process and Travel Demand Model (TDM) analysis. The RSA resulted in a number of recommendations ranging from extending paved shoulders to realigning intersections. The following is summary of the RSA recommendations:
The Northeast Travel Demand Model (TDM) estimated between 12,000 and 18,000 Average Annual Daily Traffic (AADT) in 2035 along CTH JJ in the town of Grand Chute and the City of Appleton. Typically four lanes are recommended for AADT above 12,000, and was thusly noted while compiling the study recommendations.
The first recommendation is for the involved parties to meet, construct a cost sharing municipal agreement and work together to make CTH JJ better for everyone. The following is a summary of the study’s corridor and specific location recommendations.
The RSA brought a lot of recommendations to the table that are important to include in the study recommendations. In the first five years, it is important to make the following immediate changes to the current road to improve safety for all users:
The most important recommendation is the construction of a 10’, year round, multi-modal path. The construction of the path is proposed in three phases. Phase 1 (5 to 10 years), connects Fox Valley Lutheran High School to Appleton North High School, providing students and recreationists a needed thoroughfare along the corridor. Phase 2 (10 to 15 years), extends the multi-modal path to the planned trail at North Gillette Street at the west end of the corridor and to the Apple Creek Trail at the east end of the corridor. Phase 3 (15 to 20 years) connects the multi-modal path to CTH A. The final multi-modal path would connect CTH A to the Apple Creek Trail.
It is recommended that the entire corridor be “complete streets” compatible by the end of 20 years. The concept “complete streets” refers to a street designed to enable safe, convenient, and comfortable access and travel for all users. The complete streets design for CTH JJ is different throughout the corridor depending on land use interactions and travel demand.
The final recommendations concentrate on Appleton North High School’s exit/entrance onto CTH JJ. There is concern for the safety of the students exiting and turning left into oncoming traffic. The RSA recommended re-routing the exit/entrance to Lightning Drive where the students can access CTH JJ at a future controlled intersection. If re-routing the exit/entrance is not possible then restricting left turning exiting the school with a median and adding a roundabout to Lightning Drive and CTH JJ intersection to slow traffic down before they approach the school and to provide students with a way to travel west on CTH JJ.
For more information on the CTH JJ recommendation and for figures and exhibits please use the links in the left sidebar.