Traffic in Bozeman continues to increase and it is becoming evident that some of our roadways are not capable of handling continued growth in their current configuration. The City of Bozeman commission considered both an expansion on Main Street and an expansion on Oak Street. The Oak Street option is more favorable to the commission at this time.
Commission OKs plan to build most of Oak Street to five lanes, add roundabouts
By Eric Dietrich Bozeman Daily Chronicle Chronicle Staff Writer Mar 7, 2016
Bozeman city commissioners adopted a long-term plan Monday to build out Oak Street to five lanes for most of the way between Rouse Avenue and Cottonwood Road.
They also want roundabouts at intersections with Cottonwood, Ferguson Avenue and Davis Lane.
The work also would fix narrowing along Oak near New Holland Drive that has been repeatedly cited by Public Works Director Craig Woolard as emblematic of what he calls the partially finished street network that serves northwest Bozeman.
Along its 3.5 mile corridor, Oak is currently built variously to five lanes, half-width or, east of Ferguson Avenue, not constructed at all, said Danielle Scharf, a traffic engineer with city consultant Sanderson Stewart.
The version of the plan endorsed by the commission, amended from recommendations provided by Sanderson Stewart and city engineers, calls for building the street out to five lanes from Cottonwood east to North Fifth Avenue, then three lanes to Rouse Avenue.
In addition to the roundabouts at Cottonwood, Ferguson and Davis, the plan also calls for new signals at 27th and 11th avenues. It is expected to cost about $18 million.
“This is going to take us several years to complete,” Woolard said, saying money for the work will come from a combination of impact fees, developer contributions and revenue from the city’s new arterial and collector assessment.
Scharf said development is likely to bring about 4,000 new residential units to the area along the corridor, enough to bring traffic volume to a projected 14,500 trips a day between Ferguson and Davis and more than 20,000 trips a day between 19th and 11th avenues.
Taylor Lonsdale, a research engineer with the MSU-affiliated Western Transportation Institute, said in public comment that the city should move away from designing streets only for efficient vehicle flow.
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