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Outstanding Staff Team Award Winner 2016

Traffic Calming Phase 2


Unit:

Ancillary Services, Facilities and Services

Role:

Transportation Services and Grounds

Citation

The project I am nominating this team for is the traffic calming work in KDD outside of Convocation Hall - there were others involved in the first phase of work but the second phase involved a significant amount of time pressure and logistical challenges, and so I am focusing on the second phase of work. The Convocation Hall traffic calming project consisted of the implementation of an “intervention” in the area outside of Convocation Hall at the south end of Kings’ College Circle which has been of increasing concern to the whole University community for many years. The primary concern was pedestrian safety, due to the area consisting of a large, open roadway without a coherent intersection. The pedestrian zone ultimately designed and created to correct these issues is an open “safe” space directly outside Convocation Hall, defined by bollards and a paint treatment on a newly asphalted surface, connected to the north side of Convocation Hall by a sloped sidewalk transition, and with a new intersection created where Kings’ College Road meets Kings’ College Circle. Road painting, including new defined pedestrian crossings, and a new stop sign, were also added to complete the project. There has been universal (and unsolicited) praise for the intervention from numerous community members at the University and in the broader community, including a resounding endorsement by the members of the Governing Council at their first meeting in September 2015, when the new zone had just been completed. This area has been the subject of concern for many years, but because of the existence of so many challenges associated with making physical changes to such a central and widely used area (see section below), nothing has previously seemed feasible, except in the context of ambitious master plans for the entire precinct. One of the reasons that this project was able to overcome these challenges was that it was imagined and structured from its inception as a small, low-cost, temporary fix. The road could easily be repainted, and the bollards removed, if the result wasn’t satisfactory, without too much worry about excessive sunk cost. This lowered psychological barriers for both the approvers of the work and the team that managed the implementation. A significant amount of creativity was also required by the team to solve the logistical and design challenges. The project was charged with solving the traffic problems in the area without harming the important and historic views in this part of the campus, and ensuring that practical considerations related to parking capacity, snow removal, campus events and visiting tour buses were addressed. This required creative modifications to the design, which included the shape of the pedestrian zone, spacing of bollards, placement of new stop sign(s), strategic elimination of a minimal number of parking spaces and appropriate road marking. Because the project area is in the busiest and most central area on campus, all of the work had to be staged to minimize disruption related to road closure and reduced parking availability. The work was successfully completed on time for the start of the fall semester, with minimal disruption to the community.

Congratulations:
Alex MacIsaac
Stan Szwagiel