Holly Springs has a team of engineers whose job is to prioritize safety on our roadways. Of the 646 collisions that occurred last year in Town, less than 1% involved pedestrians and cyclists.
"Our goal is zero collisions involving pedestrians or cyclists," said Holly Springs Senior Project Engineer Michael Leonas at this week's Town Council meeting.
Leonas and his team never stop working to improve safety along roads in Town. The team's methods, to name just a few, include light-reflecting crosswalk paint, sidewalk installations, signage – including electronic signs that show a vehicle's speed in juxtaposition with a standard speed limit sign – and more.
One of the Town's current priority projects, Leonas said, is to add a 1,125-linear-foot sidewalk connection along Main Street between the Arbor Creek neighborhood and the Trellis Pointe apartments, near Ting Park. Once completed, the sidewalk will extend from Arbor Creek, past Ting Park, through downtown Holly Springs, where existing sidewalks connect with other parks, greenways, and businesses. Design of the approximately $1.2 million project is underway with construction expected to begin in the 2024-2025 fiscal year.
Adding flashing beacons at four crosswalks also is in the works, Leonas said. As supply chain and scheduling issues resolve, pedestrians soon should be able to activate a flashing beacon when crossing Main Street at Earp Street and at the Bass Lake Road intersections with Earp Street, Stinson Avenue, and Maple Avenue.
Staff also continues work on updates to the Town's Unified Development Ordinance, which guides how developments are built in Town. As roads are constructed, incorporating islands, roundabouts, and other designs can encourage reduced vehicle speeds, improving safety, Leonas said.
Feedback from the community helps guide improvements. Residents can contact Holly Springs 311 or complete an online form to request staff to investigate an area of traffic safety concern. The Town's standardized evaluation process includes data collection and field investigations with recommendations based on national standards and best practices.
Of the more than 150 requests received last year, 52% have resulted in action, such as the addition of signage, new crosswalk striping, the conversion of an intersection to a four-way-stop, and more. The team also has plans for improvements in response to an additional 24% of the requests.
"Our work is continuous and ongoing," Leonas said. "It's also rewarding as we see real progress being made."