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Saco Route 112 /Exit 36 Area Transportation Study

Saco Route 112 /Exit 36 Area Transportation Study

Over the past year, the City of Saco has been exploring and evaluating potential improvements to the morning and evening congestion occurring on Route 112 and surrounding roads. This study has taken place in partnership with the Maine Turnpike Authority and Maine Department of Transportation, and final recommendations are now available.

Traffic Safety Committee Meeting on October 8, 2020 - Project Update 
On October 8th, Saco's Traffic Safety Committee reviewed the Draft Preliminary Design Report from the Maine Turnpike Authority in response to traffic challenges in the Route 112 Corridor. City staff will share our community members' feedback with the Maine Turnpike Authority and Maine Department of Transportation.

You can watch a recording of the meeting on the Traffic Safety Committee's page.  

You can also learn more about the project on the Maine Turnpike Authority's website.

If you have questions for the Traffic Safety Committee, please email the chairman Deputy Chief Corey Huntress. 

Project Update:
The following recommendations and press release  documents were provided by Morris Communications) 
Final Recommendations 
Press Release 

Garfield Street Intersection Update (December 16, 2019) 
The North Street/Garfield Street intersection was identified as the highest crash location in the Saco Route 112/ Exit 36 Area Traffic Study conducted in partnership with Maine DOT and the Maine Turnpike Authority. On September 12, 2019, Saco’s Traffic Safety Committee voted unanimously to implement “No Left Turns at Garfield Street”, which was recommended as part of that study. We are happy to share that since eliminating left-hand turns at the intersection of Garfield Street and North Street (Route 112), zero accidents have been reported at this intersection. 

You can read more about the observations and next steps here

Traffic Safety Committee Meeting (September 12, 2019) 
On Thursday, September 12th, the Traffic Safety Committee will be reviewing short-term recommendations proposed in the Saco Route 112/Exit 36 Area Transportation Study. The short-term recommendations being discussed include turning restrictions for Garfield Street at North Street, Traffic signalization for Buxton Road at Jenkins Road, and Traffic signalization for North Street at Franklin Street.

To view the agenda for the meeting, please visit the Traffic Safety Committee page here.

The other recommendations included in the study, both short-term and long-term, are being reviewed by staff. As funding becomes available, additional traffic changes in this area may be discussed at future Traffic Safety Committee meetings.

If you are unable to attend but would still like to provide feedback, please contact Deputy Chief, Corey Huntress, CHuntress@sacomaine.org or call (207)282-8214. 

Final Public Meeting 
Thanks to all of you who attended the final public meeting, and for all your good comments. If anyone has additional thoughts (which are very welcome!), please click here to send them to the study team. The deadline for us to be able to consider comments is March 1. 

If you were unable to attend the meeting, the PowerPoint presentation can be found  here. A detailed meeting report is available here. If you left your email address at any of the meetings or asked for updates, the meeting report will be emailed to you directly.

The study team will be working with the City of Saco, Maine Turnpike Authority and MaineDOT on the final recommendations and report in the coming weeks, and expect all work to be completed by April. We’ll post a link to the final report on this site. Again, if you have asked for updates or given us your email already, you will receive a link to the final report automatically. 

Finally, because transportation and land use (zoning) is inextricably linked, you will want to be part of Saco’s current re-zoning conversation. Learn more about the re-zoning process here

 

INTRODUCTION

The Saco Route 112 / Exit 36 Area Transportation Study was launched in April 2018 and will conclude early in 2019. This study will evaluate short and long-term solutions to the morning and evening traffic congestion that occurson Route 112 and surrounding roads. Study recommendations will also include bicycle and pedestrian improvements at key locations.

 112 Study Area

 The goals of the study include improving access from side roads to Route 112, making safety improvements at intersections, improving easy access to and from the Turnpike, and separating local and through-traffic as much as is practical. A comprehensive transportation alternatives analysis will be performed. Study recommendations will also include bicycle and pedestrian improvements at key locations.

PAST ANALYSIS
Local and regional transportation issues in the Exit 36 / Route 112 area have been well documented over the past several years. The earlier Route 112 Corridor Update Study highlighted multiple issues that impede local and regional mobility and contribute to safety problems. Learn more

POTENTIAL SOLUTIONS
This previous analysis produced a range of short and long-term potential solutions, which included improving intersections and traffic signals, restricting turn movements, widening Turnpike ramps, or constructing a new road between the Turnpike and Route 112, among other ideas. None of these have been evaluated as to their effectiveness in improving traffic patterns, or for environmental and cultural resource impacts. Additionally, cost estimates need to be developed. The Saco Route 112 /Exit 36 Area Study will provide this broad range of information, giving the City, the Maine Turnpike Authority and MaineDOT officials the facts needed to make effective short and long-term decisions on improving traffic flow and safety in the area.

PURPOSE AND NEEDS STATEMENT OF CURRENT STUDY
The Purpose of the Study is to evaluate and identify long-term solutions to regional transportation issues associated with westerly connections in the vicinity of I-95 at Exit 36. Specifically, the purpose of the Study is to evaluate the potential for managing and improving access to Route 112, making safety improvements at intersections, maintaining and improving easy access to and from the Turnpike, and separating local and through traffic as much as practicable.

All potential solutions are subject to balancing statewide mobility and safety needs and funding availability.

PUBLIC MEETINGS AND ENGAGEMENT
There will be multiple opportunities for the public to weigh in during the process, both on the challenges of moving through the area and on the pros and cons of potential solutions.  

Please sign up here if you would like to get ongoing updates on meetings and study progress.

Public Meeting #1: June 14, 2018
The first public meeting was held on June 14 with a public listening session at Saco City Hall Auditorium, 300 Main Street, from 6:00-7:30 pm. The purpose of this meeting was to provide an overview of the study and current conditions in the area, and focus on gathering feedback from those who live in the study area or travel through the corridor on a regular basis. 

Meeting Minutes from June 14th Meeting 
Route 112 Corridor Short-Term Traffic Mitigation Considerations - Implementation Between 2007 and 2017

Public Meeting #2: September 27, 2018
The second of three public meetings will take place on Thursday, September 27, 6-7:30 pm at Saco City Hall Auditorium. This meeting was added at the request of the public, and we’ll be able to talk about which of the potential solutions we’ve discussed merit moving forward for further study. We will present draft recommendations for final solutions at the December meeting.   

Meeting Minutes from September 27th Meeting 
Flyer - Saco Route 112 /Exit 36 Area Transportation Study Public Meeting #2
PowerPoint Presentation - Public Meeting #2

Public Meeting #3: February 13, 2019
The third public meeting will take place from 6-8 pm on February 13th, 2019, in the Saco City Hall Auditorium.

View the meeting announcement here

The PowerPoint presentation can be found here

The meeting minutes can be found here

SCHEDULE

March 29                     Project Kick Off

March 6 -April 20        Review Available Data and Data Collection

Program (Complete supplemental traffic counts in June)

June 5                          Assessment of Current Conditions Completed

June 14                        Public Meeting #1 – Website Launch

August 17                     Assessment of Future Scenarios Completed

September 27             Public Meeting # 2

October 5                    Develop Preliminary Recommendations

February 13, 2019       Public Meeting # 3

 2019                           Final Report Complete