In November 2011, MCDOT led a team of transportation and enforcement professionals from Montgomery County, the Maryland State Highway Administration (MDSHA), and the Maryland Highway Safety Office in a two-day pedestrian road safety audit along Colesville Road in the “heart” of the Silver Spring Central Business District (CBD). This segment of Colesville Road was particularly notable because of the density of unique “traffic generators”, including entertainment (i.e., Fillmore Music Hall, movie theater), dining, and shopping, bisected by a major regional corridor
The study area is an approximately 0.3-mile segment of Colesville Road located in a relatively densely developed, urban corridor between Fenton Street and North Noyes Drive. This stretch of Colesville Road was identified as one of Montgomery County’s High Incidence Areas (HIA) for pedestrian collisions. Based on collision data provided by Montgomery County and the Maryland State Highway Administration, 29 pedestrian collisions occurred in the study area from January 2004 through February 2011.
The audit team noted the role of the existing character of Colesville Road, vehicle speeds, the unsignalized mid-block crosswalk, and the reversible lane configurations, as potentially contributing to pedestrian safety issues. Based on the team’s field observations and an examination of available data, the team developed various suggestions to address these issues. Moving forward, there will be an ongoing vetting of the audit suggestions with collaboration among agencies and stakeholders to implement short and intermediate-term recommendations and assess the feasibility and constructability of long-term projects.