A participating United Way agency
April 3, 1997
Boulder City Council Members
P.O. Box 791
Boulder, CO 80306
Dear Council Members,
On behalf of Special Transit's approximately 3,000 elderly and disabled passengers, we are urging Boulder's City Council Members to consider neighborhood speed and congestion mitigation alternatives that do not use physical barriers such as traffic circles and speed humps. We will provide over 120,000 passenger trips this year to Boulder residents and others, accessing shopping and medical destinations within the city. Many of our passengers have called us to complain about the rough ride they experience with speed humps and traffic circles.
Special Transit is supportive of the city's efforts to evaluate alternatives. The impacts of increased congestion (higher speeds on already busy streets, and many motorists pushing the limits on yellow lights), have also resulted in negative impacts to our services. Over the past 18 months, Special Transit has experienced significantly more non-preventable accidents in Boulder, resulting in damage to our buses and increased training costs to ensure that drivers have advanced defense driving techniques. While these issues have direct negative impact on safety and higher costs, the physical barriers to remedy congestion, are unfortunately more damaging. Our concerns are detailed below:
The users of all Special Transit's services are tax payers who live, work and access services in Boulder because of the qualtiy of life and the quality of services available. Elderly and disabled individuals living in the neighborhoods, are able to continue living independently in their homes because the availability of door-to-door bus service does not compromise their safety or comfort. Physical traffic barriers are impeding access for our clients and compromising safety to our drivers, passengers and other motorists, in addition to the vehicle maintenance issues.
An option to stagger speed bumps was presented by staff at the March 27th Transit Advisory Board meeting. This solution would lessen the impact to emergency equipment and response-time. While the Boulder Fire Department and ambulance service may be able to successfully negotiate staggered bumps on designated non-emergency routes, Special Transit's buses can not cross the center line to avoid driving over the bumps. Staggered bumps are not a solution to the issues raised.
The controversy surrounding traffic congestion/mitigation strategies is complex and has generated passionate responses on both sides of the issue. With all sincerity, we respectfully request that you consider options that will address Boulder's increasing congestion problems that do not include installation of physical barriers. Please feel free to call Lenna or me with any questions you might have.
Linda Diebert/Lenna Kottke
© Special Transit, 1997
1880 Pearl Street, Boulder, Colorado 80301