Study Recommendations

The initial year of this study was spent reviewing existing and projected future conditions in the study area related to traffic, safety, and social, economic, and environmental issues. In addition, since this study is a follow-up to a transportation study conducted in 2005-2006 (but not completed due to funding shortfalls), valuable data from this as well as other previous planning studies in the area was also considered. The results of this data collection effort led to the identification of the following key study area issues and needs:

  • Congestion and safety issues exist along 55th Street NW due to heavy traffic volumes and closely spaced signalized intersections
  • Lack of a west frontage road between 55th Street NW and 65th Street NW for local traffic circulation
  • Access spacing issues exist along the East Frontage Road (Bandel Road) between 55th Street NW and 65th Street NW causing congestion and safety issues
  • Desire for new access to Highway 52 at 65th Street due to development pressure surrounding this area
  • Need to preserve mobility, operations, and safety on Highway 52

The study committee identified a preliminary set of improvement alternatives aimed at addressing these key project issues and needs. These alternatives included the following elements:

  1. 55th Street NW Interchange Reconstruction – Increase capacity through the addition of travel lanes and intersection improvements as well as improve intersection spacing (i.e., consideration of alternative interchange configurations and traffic control methods)
  2. 6-lanes on 55th Street NW between Chateau Road and the East Frontage Road (Bandel Road)
  3. Addition of a West Frontage Road between 55th Street NW and 65th Street NW
  4. Access management solutions for driveways to businesses and homes along the East Frontage Road just north of 55th St
  5. 65th Street NW Interchange – Consideration of several interchange configurations with the intent to optimize traffic operations while minimizing right of way impacts as well as cost
  6. Additional local roadway capacity improvements (additional lanes and/or intersection turn lanes, intersection improvements, traffic control devices, etc.)

This preliminary set of improvement alternatives was presented to the public at an informational open house in April 2010.

Based on input from the public and regulatory agencies and additional analysis, a final set of recommended improvements was developed. The recommended improvements include the following elements:

  1. Construction of a new folded diamond interchange at Highway 52 and 65th Street NW and add auxiliary lanes on Highway 52 between 55th Street NW and 65th Street NW
  2. Relocation of the 55th Street East Frontage Road
  3. Expand to six lanes the section of 55th Street NW between Members Parkway and the East Frontage Road (Bandel Road)
  4. Reconstruction of the interchange at Highway 52 and 55th Street NW as a single point urban interchange
  5. Additional local roadway capacity improvements (e.g., additional lanes and/or intersection turn lanes)