Waterbury West Main Street Corridor Study

Project Overview:

NVCOG is leading the West Main Street Corridor Study in conjunction with the City of Waterbury and the CT Department of Transportation. The purpose of the study is to develop an in depth understanding of the challenges and opportunities of this stretch of road from Route 8 to the Green and create solutions that improve safety for all users including pedestrians, cyclists, public transit riders and drivers.

Map of Project Area

West Main Street is a short corridor in an urbanized area that sees significant use. The block-by-block street character varies significantly. It ranges between two and six lanes, includes a variety of land uses, a railroad bridge, an incomplete sidewalk network, some street parking, several signalized intersections and some difficult pedestrian crossings. It’s an important corridor that serves as a primary surface street connection across the Naugatuck River into downtown Waterbury.

West Main Street also connects several regionally significant employers and destinations, including UConn Waterbury, Waterbury Hospital, St. Mary’s Hospital, the Basilica and several other large religious establishments, as well as the Waterbury YMCA, the Mattatuck Museum, several state offices and the seat of local government.

This study will develop a conceptual plan and recommendations for the corridor that will address safety and traffic flow concerns and provide for improved pedestrian, bicycle, and transit-user accessibility. We will also examine the impacts of reducing lane widths in certain sections of this corridor, also known as a “road diet” to accommodate increased pedestrian space, safe crossings, and appropriate transit stops and flows including the potential for a bus-only lane or a shared bus lane.  

The final product will be a full study of our findings along with several conceptual drawings detailing what improvements are needed to create a safer environment, better traffic flow and encourage economic development.

Project Announcements:

Check out the West Main Street Study website for project updates and opportunities for input. We have an interactive map feature on the website that lets you add pin point areas of concern. 

Fuss and O’Neill is the primary consultant  leading the study. Currently, we are in “Existing Conditions” phase of the project, collecting data and input to learn as much as we can about the challenges and opportunities of this corridor.

Public Meeting Dates:

We held our first virtual public meeting on Tuesday, January 12, 2021 from 5-7 pm. Our next public meeting will be in Spring 2021.

Download a PDF version of our first public meeting flyer here: WestMainFlyer

Staff Contact:

Lesley Barewin
Senior Planner – Special Projects
lbarewin@nvcogct.gov

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Bristol Route 229 Corridor Study

The NVCOG in collaboration with the CTDOT, the City of Bristol, and the Town of Southington has engaged a multidisciplinary team to conduct a corridor study along CT Route 229 between Interstate 84 and US Route 6. The intent of the study is to plan for future development while addressing safety and traffic flow concerns, and provide for improved pedestrian, bicycle, and transit-user accessibility. 

Route 229 is characterized by a variety of typologies and traverses diverse land uses. North of Route 72, King Street is a two-lane road through a residential neighborhood, providing access to the Route 6 commercial district and Bristol Eastern High School. At Broad Street, Route 229 widens to multiple lanes in both directions. The intersections of Middle Street and Route 72 and Middle Street and Pine Street/Mountain Road are of particular hazard due to high vehicle volumes, multiple lanes, and a large number of vehicles entering and exiting the roadway. This section of roadway is a hotspot for crashes. South of Pine Street, Route 229 becomes a four-lane undivided highway and remains four lanes until the Southington town line. This is a regionally significant commercial and industrial district and a significant employment center. The region’s largest employer, ESPN, is located on Middle Street, just north of the Southington town line. Additionally, the seasonal theme park, Lake Compounce, is accessed from Middle Street. The corridor’s only transit route, CTfastrak, services the Lake Avenue park-and-ride. At the Southington town border, the road narrows to one southbound lane and is the site of recurring congestion. The road remains as such until roughly 1500 feet north of I-84 Interchange 31. Land use throughout the West Street portion of the corridor is a mix of commercial and residential with several substantial business parks located in the close vicinity on intersecting streets. 

As part of the study, we will collect and analyze traffic and safety data, work with the public to identify weaknesses and opportunities along the corridor, propose countermeasures to improve safety and traffic flowproduce a final report summarizing the analysis and recommendations, and provide conceptual engineering drawings for spot improvements along the length of the corridor needed to create a safer environment for all users, better traffic flow and support ongoing economic development. 

The study is being conducted by a team of planning experts and key stakeholders, led by BL Companies., a multi-discipline firm with extensive expertise in planning and traffic engineering. Additional expertise in real estate market trends and land use demand is being provided by The Williams Group.

Staff Contact:

Christian Meyer
Supervising Transportation Planner
cmeyer@nvcogct.gov

Public Involvement Process

We strive to create a public involvement process that is collaborative, accessible and inclusive. During the course of the study, our team will use a variety of tools to engage the public in a discussion and dialogue regarding the future of Route 229 and how future improvements can better integrate all users. 

We will conduct interviews with stakeholders, prepare an online survey, develop an interactive map, conduct public information meetings, and provide frequent updates via this website and NVCOG’s social media platforms. Additionally, all documents related to the project will be posted to this website. All are encouraged to participate in this project. If you have a question or would like to provide a comment, suggestion or have an idea, please email here.  

Stakeholder Interviews

We will conduct several in depth interviews with key project stakeholders such as business owners and daily users along the corridor. The goal of this effort is to have in-depth conversations about issues and opportunities along Route 229 and to incorporate this feedback into the recommendations for improvements.  

Public Meetings

Three public meetings will be conducted with the dual purpose of sharing our findings and hearing directly from the community about their concerns and ideas for Route 229. These meetings are open to all. If you cannot attend, all meetings will be recorded and put onto the website. The first meeting will be a virtual workshop format. The schedule and format of Meetings #2 and #3 will be subject to public health limitations/guidance regarding in-person gatherings. 

Social Media

In addition to this website, we will keep you up-to-date regarding the project’s status and progress on NVCOG’s social media platforms. Follow us there! 

Survey coming soon!

Timeline/Schedule for the Route 229 Corridor Study

Future documents related to this study will be available here.

Oxford Route 67 Alternative Transportation Study

*NEW* Review the DRAFT Existing Conditions Technical Memorandum

The Oxford Route 67 Alternative Transportation Study is underway to investigate the potential for bicycle, pedestrian and transit improvements along Route 67 in Oxford.  The study is being funded by the Naugatuck Valley Council of Governments (NVCOG) with federal transportation planning funds and is being conducted by TranSystems, a planning and engineering consultant with offices in Meriden, CT.  It is being overseen by the Oxford Main Street Committee that was formed in 2017.

Route 67
Existing Conditions along Route 67. Note the lack of pedestrian and bicycle accommodations.

Unlike many of its neighbors, Oxford does not have a typical walkable New England downtown or Main Street.  Instead, municipal services and commercial areas are dispersed along with residences along State Route 67. Although Route 67 is fundamentally Oxford’s “Main Street,” it currently has no sidewalks or any safe bicycle or pedestrian access, and traffic speeds are excessive with no visual cues to alert motorists that they are driving through an area where they may encounter walkers or bicyclists.  In addition, no public transit is operated along Route 67 that could provide residents an alternative transportation option.  Transit options by train on Metro North and by bus on CT Transit are available only one mile from the Oxford town line, but there is currently no way for Oxford residents to safely access these services without a personal motor vehicle.

In Oxford’s 2018 Plan of Conservation and Development, the town prioritized creating more of a downtown feel along Route 67, and the Oxford Main Street Committee has been investigating streetscape improvements, sidewalks and trails within the corridor to improve non-motorized access.    The study will build on the committee’s prior work to develop a cohesive plan for the entire corridor to better enable the Town to plan, prioritize, and fund future improvements.

This webpage will be continually updated with study materials, meeting dates, and opportunities for input – please stay tuned!

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*NEW* Public Survey

Do you live or work in Oxford or surrounding communities?  Do you travel on Route 67?  We want to hear from you! Please take this short survey:

Upcoming Meetings

There are no upcoming events at this time.

View Full Calendar

Explore the Project Area

The interactive Project Webmap allows users to explore the project corridor in greater detail by turning on and off various data layers that are informing the study:

 

Public Comments

Have a comment for the Project Team?  We want to hear from you!

 

Staff Contact:

Aaron Budris
Senior Regional Planner
abudris@nvcogct.gov

Derby-Shelton Bridge Pedestrian and Bicyclist Enhancements

Derby Shelton Bridge design

Project Background 

The Derby-Shelton Bridge carries Bridge Street (State Road 712) over the Housatonic River between Downtown Shelton and Downtown Derby. The bridge is a primary crossing of the Housatonic River within the Naugatuck Valley Region and is a critical element of the regional infrastructure. The bridge was built in 1918 and is historically significant. While the substructure is in good condition, many elements have deteriorated over time, including the pavement structure, parapet walls, and lighting.  

The intent of the project is to renovate and rehabilitate the elements along the top of the bridge and enhance the bridge’s aesthetics. Because it connects two downtowns, there is an opportunity to improve not only its function but also its form and create an aesthetically pleasing public space for pedestrians and bicyclists. The project limits extend from the intersection with Route 34 (Main Street) in Derby to the west end of the Derby-Shelton Bridge and includes the connections to Canal Street. 

The project is being designed by AECOM under contract to the NVCOG. Construction will be advertised and administrated by the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT).   

Project Elements 

The proposed improvements to the bridge include adding a second through travel lane in the eastbound direction, installing of a two-cycle track for bicyclists, and creating a wider pedestrian plaza. In addition, existing deteriorated elements will be replaced and upgraded.   

The project will include: 

  • The replacement of bridge parapet walls. The proposed new parapet will be a concrete wall and mimic the style of the existing wall to adhere to its historic context. A decorative railing will be placed on top of the new parapet to increase its height to ensure pedestrian safety. The railing will be of the same style and pattern as the railing at Veterans Memorial Park in Shelton.  
  • Various roadway improvements including the addition of a second eastbound travel lane and the replacement of the bituminous pavement surface and the underlying concrete deck.  The shoulders, which are very wide today, will be narrowed to permit the additional travel. The intersection at Route 34 (Main Street) in Derby will be shifted slightly and the lane arrangement will be changed to permit a separate right turn lane. 
  • The creation of a larger pedestrian space on the south side and a bi-directional cycle-track to separate bicyclists from both vehicular traffic and pedestrians. Textured pavement and buffers with planters will help define these spaces. The cycle-track and pedestrian plaza will link with the Derby Greenway and Shelton’s RiverWalk. 
  • The removal of existing “Cobra-style” lighting. Period style, decorative lights will be installed along the bridge on top of the parapet walls. These lights will enhance the presence of the bridge at night and comply with dark sky guidelines. The new lighting will be designed to complement the new lights that will be installed as part of the Route 34 (Main Street) reconstruction project to create a consistent and cohesive environment. 

Status of Project

The final design has been completed and the project has been advertised for construction. Bids are due November 18thConstruction is scheduled to begin in Spring 2021.  

The project plans were also updated to include the extension of the cycle track and pedestrian walkway down the southeast ramp to Canal Street. The ramp has been permanently closed to motor vehicles. Access to Bridge Street from Canal Street has been routed to the new roadway through the former Spongx property that now houses the Canal Street Lofts Building. 

The Design Team continues to work with CTDOT to incorporate accent lighting along the side of and underneath the bridge. 

Public Information Meeting

A meeting was held on February 26, 2020, to provide updated project details to residents, commuters, business owners, and other interested individuals. Click here for minutes from the February 26 meeting. 

Bridge Street Proposed Typical Sector Crosssection Drawing
Bridge Street Proposed Typical Sector Crosssection Drawing
Derby-Shelton Bridge Nighttime view from the south.
Proposed Bridge Street Intersection
Proposed Bridge Street Intersection

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Route 8 & Waterbury Branch Line Corridor/Alternative Modes Study

Beacon Falls/Seymour Workshop

A Study of options to reduce congestion and increase mobility throughout the Route 8 and Waterbury Branch Rail Line corridors. 

About the Study

The Route 8 & Waterbury Branch  Line Corridor/Alternative Modes Study is assessing the needs and opportunities for improving service on the Waterbury Branch Line and the feasibility of alternatives to single occupancy vehicles. These alternative modes include commuter rail, express bus and Bus Rapid Transit, walking and biking. The project is being led by AECOM Technical Services, Inc. The study Team has completed an overview of existing travel conditions within the corridor, an assessment of transit-oriented development opportunities within rail station areas, and the feasibility of instituting BRT service. A website has been set up to provide project details. Click here to access the Alt Modes Study website.

Transit Rider Input

In support of the study goals and objectives, the NVCOG conducted an on-board count and survey of passengers riding the Waterbury branch line trains. All inbound and outbound trains were counted and surveyed over a three-day period.  The goals of the survey were to gain insight into the key concerns passengers have with quality and frequency of service.

Take a look at what the riders had to say about train service in the Naugatuck Valley: WBL Passenger Count Summary.

Transit Oriented Development 

Aimportant task of the study was determining the feasibility of Transit-Oriented Developments (TOD) in vicinity of the Waterbury rail line stations. A TOD integrates land use, transportation, and the environment and results in new housing, jobs, and more sustainable and walkable communities. They are characterized by compact, mixed-use land uses that  provide a wide range of housing styles and commercial space choices. To guide the assessment, the study team conducted a series of workshops in each community along the rail line and developed a Visual Preference Survey that allowed residents to describe how they would like to see their downtowns in the future. From these preference surveys, model TOD blocks were created. To read more about possible TOD scenarios in the Naugatuck Valley: TOD Scenario Report.   

Bus Rapid Transit or BRT 

While the primary objective of the study is to improve and enhance service on the Waterbury line, other transiactions were also explored. Regular fixed-route bus services operate in the corridor, but they do not provide travel time efficiencies that commuters find attractive. A BRT operation blends the positive features of rail with the flexibility of bus transit, to make riding the bus a higher-end service alternative. The study team explored the merits of enhancing bus service between Derby and Bridgeport, identifying five possible alternatives. The preferred option included the construction of a dedicated busway within the median of Route 8 with limited stops at newly created transit hubs. Feeder bus services would be implemented to move travelers from the transit hubs to their final destinations. This action is considered a long term vision for the corridor. To learn more about BRT in Naugatuck Valley:  BRT Scenario Report.   

Next Steps… 

The study is advancing to the final recommendations with a focus on a capital and operations improvement plan for the Waterbury Rail Line and a long-term vision of developing a Bus Rapid Transit system along Route 8 between Derby and Bridgeport. A visualization of recommended services is being developed and the study team will be meeting with municipal representatives to promote TOD land uses.  

In the meantime, the NVCOG is working with its mayors and first selectmen and its state legislative delegation to support funding for needed short-term Waterbury rail line improvements.  In January 2020, NVCOG held the Naugatuck Valley Rail Conference to engage stakeholders in a dialog about the region’s rail needs.   

Watch statewide news coverage of the event here.

Staff Contact: 

Mark Nielsen
Director of Planning/Assistant Director
mnielsen@nvcogct.gov

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Route 67 Seymour – Spot Improvements

Status of Project

The design of the project has begun to improve Route 67 from the west end of the Klarides Village retail development extending easterly along Bank Street to the eastern side of the bridge over the Naugatuck River based on the information provided in the 2016 study.

The design is being performed by Milone & MacBroom Inc. It is anticipated that the design work will be completed in 2022 and the project will proceed to construction in Fall 2022. Preliminary Design Plans are currently under review. The Revised Preliminary Design Report is available for viewing.

crosswalk on street

The following improvements are anticipated:

1. Johnson Street at Bank Street (unsignalized)

– Close the southerly portion of Johnson Street at Bank Street to traffic while maintaining access only for emergency and maintenance vehicles.  Maintain Johnson Street as a two-way street; provisions for vehicles to turn around will be needed.

2. Klarides Village and Bank Street (unsignalized)

– Construct a new raised island within the existing driveway to physically restrict and reinforce the left-turn prohibition for vehicles exiting the development and to revise the pavement markings on Bank Street to provide the required width for Route 67 westbound traffic to bypass vehicles turning left into the development.

3. Bank Street at Church Street/Beecher Street (unsignalized)

– Reconstruct and realign Church Street to create a T-intersection with Beecher Street separated from the intersection with Bank Street and provide a right-turn lane for northbound vehicles at Bank Street.

4. Route 67 (Bank Street) from Old Drive to Franklin Street/River Street (SR 313)

– Extend the westbound right-turn lane to Old Drive East between Old Drive East and the Walgreens Plaza driveway.

– Extend dual westbound through lanes from Franklin Street to Martha Street to lengthen the vehicle merge distance.

– Widen Route 67 to provide adequate turn-lane lengths and 5′ shoulders on both the north and south sides of the road and reconstruct sidewalks.

– Replace traffic signal equipment at the Franklin Street/River Street intersection, improve traffic signal operations and efficiency, and adjust signal timings within the project limits.

– Improve intersection geometrics, pedestrian accommodations, and accessible crosswalks.

– Widen River Street to provide for the required lane-queue lengths and modify the Little River bridge to accommodate the continuation of sidewalks along River Street on the upstream side of the existing bridge.

The project will also include two feasibility analyses which will investigate the following:

1. Construction of a multi-use trail along the Naugatuck River from Bank Street, along River Street to the Broad Street green.

2. Improvements to the existing sidewalk widths on the Route 67 bridge over the Naugatuck River to determine the feasibility of providing a handicapped-accessible pedestrian route from the improvements proposed under this project at the Bank Street/River Street intersection to the recently constructed Naugatuck River Greenway Trail east of the river.

Background:

In 1991 a study was conducted to assess traffic conditions along the Route 67 corridor through Southbury, Oxford, and Seymour. In 2011 the Valley Council of Governments (VCOG) hired design engineers Milone & MacBroom, Inc. to expand upon the 1991 report and to conduct additional analyses to further refine the information provided in the earlier report. Milone & MacBroom’s report focused on the segment of Route 67 in Seymour from Klarides Village to the River Street/Franklin Street Intersection.

An updated preliminary engineering study was conducted by  Milone & MacBroom and completed in March of 2016. The study and the subsequent recommended improvements are designed to address heavy congestion and safety concerns through this segment of Route 67. Accident history, traffic volumes and level of service at both signalized and un-signalized intersections were among the items studied. Pedestrian patterns were also reviewed. The report offers design alternatives and preliminary cost estimates to improve traffic and safety along the corridor while considering the impacts to and the needs of the adjacent residences and businesses, future redevelopment, and other interested or affected stakeholders.

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Route 34 Main Street Derby Reconstruction

Status of Project:Cars driving on Route 34 in Derby

The Design of the project is approaching completion and plans are expected to be completed by May 2021 anticipated construction start date is early fall 2021.

Introduction: Route 34 exists as a primary artery through much of the lower valley and operates as a key connection between the downtowns of Shelton and Derby. Route 34 further exists as the ‘Main Street’ for Derby. This has been a major design consideration with regard to the rehabilitation of the roadway. The reconstruction project of Route 34 from Bridge Street to the Route 8 interchange was initiated to combat congestion along this stretch of road.  Secondary to this is the understanding that as the City’s ‘Main Street’ the design team needs to remain cognizant of the needs to facilitate and encourage a roadway that creates a vibrant, walkable, and visually pleasing mixed-use place.

Designer: Luchs Consulting Engineers, LLC/DeCarlo& Doll Inc. The project is being managed by NVCOG under the supervision of the Connecticut Department of Transportation.

Summary of Project: Main Street in Derby will be reconstructed between Bridge Street and Route 8. The project includes widening to create two through lanes in each direction separated by a center median, with dedicated turning lanes at intersections, improvements to traffic signals including the interconnect of the signals to improve traffic flow, improvements to parking including on-street parallel parking on both the north and south sides of Main Street and a separate parking lot on the south side of Main Street across from the Derby Senior Center with roughly 30 to 35 parking spaces,  an upgraded storm drainage system, new sidewalks with bump-outs at intersections, lighting and other streetscape features such as trees, granite curbing, and brick paver areas. Improvements will be made to Elizabeth Street, Minerva Street, Water Street, and Factory Street. Elizabeth, Minerva, and Thirds Streets will be converted to one-way circulation. Traffic will travel north on Minerva and south on Elizabeth. Angled on-street parking will be implemented on Minerva Street. Parallel on-street parking will be maintained on Elizabeth. Parallel on-street parking will be implemented on Third Street. Pedestrians will have refuge islands mid-way as they cross Main St. Sanitary sewer improvements will also be incorporated into the project.

The Semi-Final Design Plans have been submitted for review and final plans are expected to be completed by April 2020. 

This plan from 2016  depicts the cycle track along the south side of Main Street, since the time this drawing was created changes were made based on input from the public which removes the cycle track and creates on-street parking along the south side of Main Street.

Aerial Visualization includes the cycle track which has now been removed from the project resulting from public input. Parking along the south side of Main Street will be added.

Route 34 Preliminary Design Rendering

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