• October 24, 2014

Heights council to update thoroughfare plan

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Posted: Wednesday, March 19, 2014 4:30 am

HARKER HEIGHTS — City officials decided it’s time to look again at the city’s thoroughfare plan.

The plan was last updated and adopted in 2007 as part of a comprehensive plan update, and City Council members reviewed the city’s current plans during a workshop session Tuesday.

Fred Morris, director of planning and development, presented a preliminary amended version that factors in new regional and local connections for discussion. Morris said thoroughfare plans are tools to guide decision making when roadways are being considered.

These plans typically provide a road map showing general location and size based on an anticipated function.

They are important to the development of the city as they serve to ensure future right of way needs are secured before development occurs in an area.

“This plan was limited in focus and provided no mechanism to guide future roadway development,” Morris said.

The plan focused on simply “classifying” existing roads and laying out a location for the now-deleted State Highway 201.

“Given this, it is appropriate to look at updating the city’s current plan to ensure orderly and harmonious road connectivity into the future,” Morris added.

Critical corridors identified include Knights Way, Veterans Memorial Boulevard, Stillhouse Lake Road and Indian Trail. Major regional critical improvement points are Warrior’s Path, Levi Crossing, Farm-to-Market 3219, FM 3481 and FM 2410 to U.S. Highway 190.

In terms of local connections, staff identified addressing several areas to include the west-east turnaround on the eastern side of FM 2410 to U.S. 190; overall improving connectivity to 2410; and connecting Prospector Trail to Loblolly Drive and Stillhouse to Cedar Knob and 190.

During the presentation, Councilman Pat Christ made note of the city’s nonexistent east-to-west mobility capabilities and his concerns not only regarding vehicle mobility but also that of pedestrians.

“This step is just one piece of the puzzle,” Morris said. “Other aspects will follow not too far along.”

More discussions will be held in future workshops on this topic as well as multimodal thorough planning needs for sidewalks, trails and transit.

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