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Draft North Creek / Ski Bowl Access Study

Prepared for the Town of Johnsburg
March 27, 2020
DRAFT

Table of Contents
Introduction and Project Goals ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. . 1
Project Area ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……………………… 1
Existing Conditions ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……………….. 2
Roadway Geometry: ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………….. 2
Traffic Data Collection ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……….. 3
Accident Analysis ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………. 5
Intersection Sig ht Distance (ISD) ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. …………………… 6
Stopping Sight Distance (SSD): ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………….. 6
Pedestrian Facilities ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. …………… 7
Bicycle Facilities ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……………….. 8
Proposed Developments ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……… 9
Impacts of Future Development ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……………………. 11
Existing and Future Capacity Analysis ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. …………….. 11
Signal Warrant Analysis ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……. 12
Summary of Anticipated Traffic Impacts ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……. 13
Concept Alternatives ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. …………… 14
Recommendations ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ……………… 18
Pedestrian/Bicycle Recommendations ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………….. 20
Crosswalks ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. …………………. 20
Sidewalks/Multi – use Paths ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………… 22
Bicycle Recommendations ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………… 23
Summary of Recommended Pedestrian/Bicycle Improvements: ………………………….. ………………………….. . 23
Implementation & Next Steps ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. ………………………….. 24

D R A F T

1 Introduction and Project Goals
The hamlet of North Creek, located in the Town of Johnsburg, is experiencing a convergence of projects
which provide an opportunity to shape the future of the community. Several large – scale development
projects, both public and private, are slated to converge in or around Ski Bowl Park, located just across NYS
Route 28 from the heart of the hamlet. These projects will bring together a wide variety of recreational and
residential uses, which in turn create the potential for additional traffic impacts.
In addition to concerns that the traffic volume from these projects will exceed the capacity of the existing
intersections, there is potential for quality – of – life impacts and increased congestion, especially during peak
events. Another key priority for the Town is improving pedestrian accommodation at existing and proposed
crossings of NYS Route 28.
The Town is also planning to reclaim an area currently being used for sand and gravel mining by the
Department of Public Works. This area, located adjacent to the current Ski Bowl Park, will be redesigned to
provide additional recreational amenities for the community. In addition, it has been a long –
standing desire to increase the strength of the connection between the hamlet and Ski Bowl
Park, especially in terms of bicycle/pedestrian accommodations and gateway amenities.
On behalf of the Town of Johnsburg , the Adirondack/Glens Falls Transportation Council
enlisted MJ Engineering and Land Surveying for transportation planning and engineering
assistance. This is intended to fulfill two goals:
• Complete a comprehensive analysis of traffic impacts from all of the projected
development activity in and around Ski Bowl Park
• Provide technical support as a frame work for the Town to redesign Ski Bowl Park
Project Area
The project study area encompasses NYS Route 28 between Peaceful Valley Road to the south
and Ski Bowl Road to the north, and includes the section of NYS Route 28N between NYS Route 28
and Main Street.

2 Existing Conditions
Within the study area, NYS Route 28 and 28N carry the majority of vehicular traffic. Although NYS Route 28
provides critical north – south connectivity in the region, locally this highway acts as a by – pass of the hamlet,
as well as a barrier between Ski Bowl Park and North Creek. As described in greater detail below, t he
roadway itself is typical of rural NYS highways in Warren County in terms of lane width and speed limit;
roadway shoulders along NYS Route 28 in the study area are somewhat wider than found in the region at
large . Visually, both sides of NYS Route 28 are undeveloped or sparsely developed, with topography and
vegetation screening both the hamlet and the park.
Before any recommendations for future improvements can be made, a thorough analysis of existing
conditions must be undertaken. This includes the measurements of the roadway geometry, traffic counts,
accident rates, sight distance, and pedestrian/bicycle amenities and constraints.
Roadway Geometry :
Measurements were taken for lane width, shoulder width and stopping sight distance within the study
area. The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Highway Inventory Listing
lists NY Route 28 as a Rural Minor Arterial. Chapter 2 of NYSDOT Highway Design Manual (HDM) provides
standards for lane widths and shoulder widths along with other elements such as stopping sight distance.
For this roadway classification, the standard for lane width is 11 feet (minimum) and shoulder width is four
feet. Table 1 includes a summary of the field measurements for the roadway widths.

3
Traffic Data Collection
Automatic Traffic Recorders (ATRs) are tubes installed across the roadway connected to a data collection
device used to collect data related to traffic volume , vehicle classification or type and speed . ATRs were
installed at six (6) location s between August 6 and 14, 2019 within the study area as indicated on Figure 3 .
See Table 2 for a breakdown of Average Daily Traffic volumes.

A review of the available data from NYSDOT for this section of NY Route 28 revealed the peak travel
commuter periods to be from 7:00am to 9:00am and 3:00pm to 5:00pm. Turning movement volumes were
collected on Tuesday, August 6, 2019 during the peak travel commuter periods at the following three (3)
intersections with NY Route 28:
• Ski Bowl Road North ( Intersection A )
• NY Route 28N ( Intersection B )
• Ski Bowl Road South ( Intersection C )
Turning movements were also collected for Manor Road near Ski Bowl Road North which provides access to
the Senior Center and senior housing . The tabulations of the turning movement counts for each intersection
are located in Appendix 1 .

5 Accident Analysis
Accident data was requested from the NYSDOT and the Adirondack/Glens Falls Transportation Council for
the study area along NY State Route 28 between the intersection with Main Street to the north and the
intersection of County Route 29 (P eaceful Valley Road) to the south . The accident data was provided for the
five – year period from May 2014 to January 2019 and is summarized in Appendix 2.
Accident rates are calculated according to the NYSDOT Highway Design Manual Chapter 5 and compared to
the statewide average accident rate for similar facilities . Accident rates are measured in Accidents per Million
Vehicle Miles (MVM) for linear segments of roadways and Million Entering Vehicles (MEV) for intersections.
While the segment accident rate is below the statewide average accident rate for similar facilities, the
intersections are not below the statewide average accident rate. For the NY Route 28N, Ski Bowl Road
South, Manor Road, and NY Route 28N with Main Street intersections there was only a single accident in
each of the five (5) years examined. Additionally, at the intersection of NY Route 28 with Peaceful Valley
Road, two (2) of the three (3) accidents were collisions with deer. Since NY Route 28 has a lower ADT, even a
small number of identified accidents will result in an accident rate higher than the statewide average. Three
inter sections have accident rates more than two times the statewide average for similar facilities. The
intersections of NY Route 28 with Ski Bowl Road North and Peaceful Valley Road have rates approximately
six (6) times the statewide average while the intersection with Manor Road has a rate three (3) times the
statewide average.
A severity distribution was also performed for the study area. There were no fatal accidents and only two (2)
of the 30 accidents resulted in a personal injury. The severity distribution for the study area was determined
to be not significant.

 

6 Intersection Sight Distance (ISD)
Adequate intersection sight distances are required at each intersection to allow driver s to identify potential
conflicts. Intersection sight distance s are measured using sight triangles, which are defined by the American
Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) as “specified areas along intersection
approach legs and across their included corners that should be clear of obstructions that might block a
driver’s view of potentially conflicted vehicles.”

The only location that does not meet the minimum required intersection sight distances is at Ski Bowl Road South
looking south , where the sight lines are obscured by the Adopt – A – Highway sign as seen in Figure 4 . This non – standard feature can be resolved by relocating the existing sign a minimum of 165 ft away from the intersection; relocation will allow for all minimum sight distance qualifications to be met in both the north and south directions for the Ski Bowl Road South intersection .

Stopping Sight Distance (SSD) :
When sufficient, s topping sight distance allow s driver s enough time to perceive, react , and stop for an
obstruction in the roadway ; it is measured based on an eye height of 3.5 feet and object height of 2.0 feet.
Stopping sight distances are evaluated when intersection sight distances requirements are not satisfied, or a
potential pedestrian crossing is being investigated. AASHTO recommends a minimum stopping Sight
distance of 570 feet for a 60 – mph design speed .
All uncontrolled approaches to the study area intersections satisfy the stopping sight distance requirements with the NY Route 28N (Bridge Street) and Ski Bowl Road South having continuous sight lines between the
intersections.

Pedestrian Facilities
There are currently minimal pedestrian accommodations within the project corridor . There is one existing
crosswalk , also known as a high visibility crosswalk, located at the south side of the intersection of NY Route
28 with Ski Bowl  Road North. This crosswalk is currently heavily worn and faded to the point where striping
is only visible in the northbound lane as shown in Figure 5 . This crossing does not connect to any dedicated
pedestrian facilities. The wide shoulders provide access to the Senior Citizen Center via Manor Road and to
Ski Bowl Road North which leads to the North Creek Health Center. However, the crosswalk connects from
pavement edge to pavement edge with no dedicated pedestrian facilities accessible beyond the shoulders on
NY Rout e 28. Ski Bowl Road North on the east side of NY Route 28 does not have any delineated shoulders and
the pavement width is not sufficient to safely support two vehicles in addition to pedestrians. This results in
the crosswalk connecting a large front lawn on the west side to a drainage ditch on the east.
Although the crosswalk is demarcated with signs placed according to the guidance of the MUTCD (six total, with
three in each direction), two of these signs lack a retroreflective strip on the pole. To upgrade the signs to
current standards, the proper reflective markings on the posts should be installed on the signs where they are
missing. This is a cost – effective upgrade to bring more attention to the presence of pedestrians in the study
area.

The shoulders along NY Route 28 and 28N exceed the minimum 4 feet width to accommodate pedestrians.
However, the high vehicle speeds and unprotected nature of the road shoulder act as deterrents for pedestrian activity . While there were some pedestrians observed in the study area during data collection, for
pedestrian users, a small amount or lack of use does not necessarily indicate a low demand. There are no
dedicated pedestrian facilities on Ski Bowl Road North or South; with the narrow pavement widths of 21
feet, there is minimal room for a pedestrian if two vehicles are using the roadway at the same time.
One additional pedestrian accommodation to note is the underpass located south of Ski Bowl Road South .
Located on the Carol Thomas T rail , this underpass has the potential to connect Ski Bowl Park to T own H all
and Main Street . I t is currently the safest way to cross NY Route 28 and terminates just north of the Dr.
Jacques Grunblatt Memorial Beach , but does not currently provide direct access to the center of Ski Bowl
Park .
Bicycle Facilities
There are no dedicated bicycle facilities within the study area. Cyclists on NYS Route 28 and 28N can use the
wide shoulders. Ski Bowl Road and Peaceful Valley Road, in contrast, do not feature wide shoulders, so
cyclists must use the travel lane. Within the park itself, the narrow roadway is low speed and does not
currently receive heavy traffic; the roadside is also relatively flat, unobstructed lawn, which some cyclists
may also utilize when seasonal conditions permit. Peaceful Valley Road, however, has higher traffic speeds
and volumes. In addition, the roadsides are heavily vegetated, steeply sloped, and feature extensive
guiderails. This can reduce the comfort and confidence of casual cyclists, though those more experienced
with on – road cycling may be willing to utilize this route.

9 Proposed Developments
Future development of Ski Bowl Park is comprised of both private and public projects . Table 6 below
contains the proposed development s and anticipated year for completion of construction.
TABLE 6
Ski Bowl Park Future Developments Development Location Estimated Year of Completion
Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) Existing Ski Mountain and Adjacent Land 2024
Town Park Expansion Town Highway Garage & Surrounding Area 2024
Museum of Skiing and Ski Hall of Fame Town Park Expansion 2027
Front Street Development Hotel Parcel B 2029
Seasonal Housing Front Street Mountain Development 2029
Retail Parcel B 2029

See Figure 6 for a map of the proposed areas and the following paragraphs for description of the
developments.
• The ORDA site will include new lighting for night operation, replacing two ski lifts, new ski trails and
multi – season activities including a zip coaster, miniature golf and a summer/winter tubing hill.
• The Town Park expansion will occur on the existing Town Highway Garage property once it is
vacated. Preliminary plans include a skating rink, expanded fields, relocated tennis courts and
parking modifications.
• The Museum of Skiing and Ski Hall of Fame is proposed to be located within the Town Park
Expansion with the exact location yet to be determined.
• The Front Street Development is proposed to include a new hotel, new ski hut and retail at the base
of the Ski Bowl mountain area with additional seasonal housing expanded upon the existing housing
that exists to the north.

11 Impacts of Future Development
An analysis of the future conditions was performed that included the increased traffic volumes from the
proposed future developments planned for Ski Bowl Park and the surrounding properties. The Institute of
Transportation Engineers, Trip Generation Manual , 10th Edition (ITE Manual) was utilized for guidance while
developing the proposed trips. The Land Use Codes (LUC) selected for this site are as follows:
• LUC 466 – Snow Ski Area (Visitors: Winter Season 215,000; Summer Season 40,000)
• LUC 411 – Town Park E xpansion (Additional 14 Acres)
• LUC 580 – Museum of Skiing and Ski Hall of Fame (25,000 visitors per year)
• LUC 310 – Hotel (300 Rooms)
• LUC 260 – Recreational Homes (150 Units)
• LUC 861 – Retail (94,000 GSF)
The total impact of all uses combined would generate an additional 283 trips in the am peak hour and 535 additional trips in the pm peak hour.
With the Ski Bowl Park redevelopment, this area will be transformed into a resort area with multiple land
uses and will experience some internal trip capture between the retail, recreational and residential land uses.
The anticipated adjustment during the AM peak is minimal at 1% while the PM is higher at 11%. Internal trips
are trips with origins and destinations within the same site and do not use the external roadway network.
The internal trip capture rates provided in the ITE Manual were utilized. This analysis does not include these
reductions to provide a conservative analysis.
Existing and Future Capacity Analysis
One way to measure the functionality of an intersection is by quantifying Level of Service (LOS) ; for
intersections, this measures the average vehicle delay in seconds . Levels of Service are graded from LOS A
(less than 10 seconds of delay per vehicle) to F (more than 80 seconds of delay per vehicle) . LOS E and F are
usually considered failing conditions.

12 LOS analysis was performed using traffic analysis software Synchro 10© to examine the collected turning
movements at the study intersections for Existing, No – Build 2029, and No – Build 2039 conditions. The results
of this analysis are presented in Table 1 below. For the overall intersection LOS, all intersections currently
operate at LOS A and will continue under the No – Build conditions. The largest delay for an intersection is 3.1
seconds for the PM 2039 peak. This indicates there are no concerns for the future No – Build conditions.
Examining the LOS of the individual legs, the only movements with a LOS lower than A are the eastbound
and westbound approaches to Intersection 1, westbound approach to Intersection 2, and the eastbound to
Intersection 3 with the largest delay in this group of 1 2 seconds corresponding to LOS B.
To model the intersection capacity for future Buildout conditions, the results of the trip generation analysis
were distributed on the adjacent roadway network considering existing travel patterns, volumes , as well as
population centers and origins. These trips were then added to the no – build volumes and resulted in the
Buildout volumes. Most of the intersections will continue to operate at LOS A in the future Buildout
condition. However, The intersection with Ski Bowl Road South is anticipated to operate at LOS E in the PM
peak due to the large number of exiting vehicles and associated increase in delay.

Signal Warrant Analysis
A signal warrant analysis is the study of traffic volumes, pedestrian characteristics , and physical
characteristics of an intersection to determine if consideration of a traffic signal is justified. The investigation
of the need for a traffic signal include s analysis of factors related to the existing operation and safety at the
study inter section and the potential to improve these conditions. Signal warrant thresholds and analysis
requirements are set forth in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways, 2009
Edition as published by the Federal Highway Administration. The warrant analysis worksheets are included in
Appendix 3 .
A signal warrant analysis has also been performed for the existing and future conditions. Two warrants
relating to traffic volume were satisfied under the Existing conditions, future No – Build and future Build out
conditions. The number of hours satisfying the volume thresholds increase as the volumes increase, but all
the design years satisfy the same warrants. There is no threshold that modified the results of the warrant
analysis.

It is important to note that although the signal warrant thresholds have been satisfied, it does not mean that
a signal must be installed. In this case, the intersection in question, NYS Route 28/28N, currently operates at
LOS A, and is anticipated to continue to operate satisfactorily in No – Build and future Build out Condition if no
other changes are made to the circulation pattern in the study area. Conversely, installing a signal at NYS
Route 28 & 28N will not alleviate future congestion at Ski Bowl Road South . As such, the decision to install a
traffic signal is not necessarily justified on the basis of traffic volume alone.
Summary of Anticipated Traffic Impacts
• Future development is projected to increase trips in/out of Ski Bowl Park by 283 trips in the AM peak
hour and 535 trips in the PM peak hour
• All intersections are projected to continue to operate at LOS A in future No – build and Build
conditions, with the exception of Ski Bowl Road South, which will operate at LOS E in the 2039 Build
condition.
• The intersection of NYS Route 28 & 28N currently meets the 4 – hour and 8 – hour volume warrants for
traffic signal, and would continue to meet this warrant in all future conditions. However, installing a
traffic signal at the intersection will not alleviate future capacity shortfalls at Ski Bowl Road South.

 

14 Concept Alternatives
In addition to the goals of the community of Johnsburg, the analysis of existing and future conditions
revealed a number of opportunities, constraints, and impacts which will affect the development and design
of Ski Bowl Park, including:
• The need to connect Ski Bowl Park more directly with the hamlet
• Level – of – service impacts at Ski Bowl Road South during future buildout conditions
• Inadequate pedestrian accommodations , as well as high operational/posted speed limit on NYS
Route 28
• The need to create a gateway from NYS Route 28
• The potential for private development to limit access/through traffic between North and South Ski
Bowl Road
Many of these concerns could be partially addressed by creating a 4 – way intersection at the junction of NYS
Route 28 & 28N, thereby opening access directly into Ski Bowl Park. This would create a direct access point
from the center of the hamlet, bring an entrance to the Park within reasonable walking distance, create the
opportunity for a gateway, and potentially provide traffic calming.
As such, two intersection concepts were developed with the project goals of improving vehicular,
pedestrian , and bicycle access between North Creek and the Park. Th e two intersection concepts are as
follows:
A. Traffic Signal at intersection of NY Route 28 with NY Route 28N and the new access to Ski Bowl Park (Figure 7)
• 100 feet long curbed islands on intersection approaches on NY Routes 28 & 28N for traffic calming and pedestrian
refuge at crossing locations
• Ski Bowl Road South treatment is an interim option to provide a northbound left – turn lane

• Sidewalk/multi – use path connection to Main Street on north side of NY Route 28N

  • Sidewalk/multi – use path connection to Main Street; crosswalk with refuge island
  • 3 – color traffic signal with turn lanes and raised/flush medians

B. Single Lane Roundabout at intersection of NY Route 28 with NY Route 28N and the new access to
Ski Bowl Park (Figure 8)
• Curbed islands for the length of the study area and on NY Route 28N for traffic calming and pedestrian refuge at
crossing locations
• Ski Bowl Road South treatment is permanent option to provide a northbound left – turn lane with median island
• Sidewalk/multi – use path connection to Main Street on north side of NY Route 28N

Both intersection concepts include a connection to the sidewalks at the intersection of NY Route 28N with
Main Street to al low for a dedicated pedestrian and/or bicycle facility to be provided for a separate and more
comfortable experience for users who prefer to use alternate modes of transportation to access Ski Bowl
Park.
The typical section or cross section of the roadway is consistent between the two concepts outside of the NY
Route 28 intersection with NY Route 28N. Lane widths are 11 ’ with 8’ shoulders on the outside. The raised
medians with curb need to be a minimum of 6 ’ wide; when used on intersection approaches, are required to
be a minimum of 100 ’ long. The shoulders adjacent to the raised median would be 4 ’ wide. The circulatory
roadway inside the roundabout is 21 ’ wide with varying shoulder widths, a truck apron , and center island. See
Appendix 4 for typical sections and corresponding concept plan drawings.
In addition to analyzing the intersection concepts, access to the park was also explored. Currently,
agreements between the Town and FrontStreet Development may restrict through traffic access along the
west side of the park, thereby limiting the connection between the Health Center and the Park . Similarly, the
Town could opt to close the Ski Bowl Road South access (or limit it to emergency vehicle access only),
thereby directing the traffic to the proposed 4 – way intersection at NYS Route 28 & 28N.

16 Three alternatives were developed that modify the access to Ski Bowl Park . The third option was also
modeled with three intersection treatments, as follows:
1. Access Alternative 1 – Access to Ski Bowl Park is grant ed from all three intersections
2. Access Alternative 2 – Access to Ski Bowl Park is restricted from Ski Bowl Road North (entrance to
North Creek Health Center would remain) ; Ski Bowl Road South remains open
3. Access Alternative 3 – Access to Ski Bowl Park is l imited to NYS Route 28/28N only
a. Turn Lanes added at NYS Route 28/28N
b. Traffic Signal Installed at NYS Route 28/28N
c. Roundabout Installed at NYS Route 28/28N
The anticipated trips distributed to Ski Bowl Road North and South were redistributed in the roadway
network for Access Alternatives 2 and 3. The figures depicting the trip distribution, assignment , and build
volumes are presented in Appendix 1 . These alternatives were analyzed for the 2039 Future Buildout
condition , outlined in Table 10.

In the Access Alternative 1 and 2 scenarios , the only significant impacts in terms of Level – of – Service would be
experienced during the PM Peak hour at the inters ction of Ski Bo w l Road South/NYS 28. The intersection
with Ski Bowl Road South is anticipated to operate at LOS E in the PM peak due to the large number of
exiting vehicles and associated increase in delay. Although it may be possible to mitigate this impact by
adding turn lanes to this intersection, this intervention would not meet the other goals of the community,
such as fostering a gateway to the hamlet, and may further degrade access for pedestrians.

17 If Ski Bowl Road South is closed, as proposed in Alternative 3, the burden of access would shift northward to
the intersection of NYS 28/28N, which would operate at LOS D in the PM peak hour. This decrease is
operations is due to the concentration of entering and exiting traffic from Ski Bowl Park to one access point
where previously, the trips were distributed among three access points. However, if any of the proposed
intersection improvements (3a, 3b, or 3c) were constructed at NYS 28/28N, the LOS would improve to
acceptable conditions.
A table that includes the LOS for all approach lanes are included in Appendix 5 with all the Synchro© output
files included in Appendix 6 .

18 Recommendations
The traffic analysis contained in this study is intended to guide the Town of Johnsburg in future efforts to
redevelop Ski Bowl Park. As such, it presents a menu of options to select from at such time as the Town
reclaims the gravel mining operation and moves forward with park design.
Given the analysis that has been completed, creating a 4 – way intersection at NYS Route 28/28N could benefit
traffic circulation while also providing tangible co – benefits by improving connections to the hamlet and
increasing opportunities for pedestrian access. An overview of recommendations has been mapped on
Figure 9 .
In terms of vehicle circulation, creating a new access to Ski Bowl Park at NYS 28/28N will provide the most
benefit if it is combined with closing off access fr om Ski Bowl Park South. In combination with a traffic signal
or roundabout, this would allow for the best Level – of – Service by reducing the impact of increased traffic
volumes from the additional development. If the new intersection is created while Ski Bow l Road South
remains open, the southern intersection will likely still face degraded operations in future buildout
conditions. However, it is important to keep in mind that if the amount of proposed development within the
park is reduced, especially in ter ms of hotel and retail uses, the potential impact to vehicle circulation at Ski
Bowl Road South would also be reduced. In this case, it may be possible that both intersections would retain
acceptable Level – of – Service; additional analysis would be required to confirm this, however. Table 11 outlines
the Pros and Cons of adding a traffic signal or roundabout at the intersection of NYS Route 28/28N.
TABLE 11
Intersection Alternatives, Pros and Cons
NY Route 28 / 28N & Proposed Access to Ski Bowl Park
Concept Pros Cons
Traffic Signal Pros
• Traffic Calming
• Stop ped traffic would allow for views into
Ski Bowl/Hamlet
• Pedestrian signals
• Can be combined with turning lanes to provide a phased implementation

Traffic Signal Cons

• Signal maintenance time and cost
• Increased emissions from stopped vehicles
• Less potential to create a gateway feature

Roundabout Pros
• Traffic calming
• Improved traffic flow over signal
• Less perceived delay, vehicles in motion
• Through vehicles don’t need to stop if there are no vehicles or pedestrians in the roundabout
• Slower speeds and less severe accidents
• Gateway feature for Hamlet and Ski Bowl
• Improved landscape features

Roundabout Cons

• No pedestrian signals
• Increased construction costs compared to traffic signal

20 As revealed in the analysis in the previous section, from a transportation perspective both options have the
potential to handle increased traffic due to future development. The roundabout offers a greater number of
benefits, but comes with a higher potential construction cost. However, if a traffic signal is installed, this may
require much more landscaping , signage, pedestrian amenities (as discussed in the following section) and
design features in order to accomplish the goal of creating a gateway into the hamlet.
Ultimately, the choice between a traffic signal and a roundabout should ideally folded into the
comprehensive redesign of Ski Bowl Park. This will allow for the final design to be fully integrated into the
Park, taking into consideration all of the goals of the community. In addition, this will allow for a true
estimate of costs to be developed, which will give the Town a concrete goal to solicit funding. (See
Implementation for more information.)
Pedestrian /Bicycle Recommendations
Improving pedestrian access to Ski Bowl Park is one of the primary goals of this project. The downtown
hamlet core i s within a 5 – minute walk of the proposed entrance to the Park at NYS 28 & 28N. North Creek
itself has an extensive pedestrian network along Main Street, which could allow visitors to park in the hamlet
and walk to Ski Bowl, and vice versa. The following re commendations are intended to guide the
development of pedestrian facilities which link to Ski Bowl Park.
Crosswalks
There are many factors which influence the design and location of crosswalks: traffic volume and speed,
roadway width, number of travel lanes, sight distances, traffic signal timing (if applicable) and pedestrian
volume. T he 2016 NYSDOT Pedestrian Safety Action Plan (PSAP) recommends that pedestrian crossings are
best accommodated across roadways with a maximum speed of 45 mph ; the posted speed limit on NYS 28 is
55 mph. Within New York State, changes to posted speed limits are enacted by NYSDOT. Historically, such
changes are not undertaken often, and very rarely without a material change to the context of the roadway
itself, such as a significant increase in development density or vehicle crashes. Ultimately, given enough
redevelopment in Ski Bowl Park, it may be feasible to request a reduction in the speed limit on NYS Route 28
within the study area upon full buildout.
However, in the meantime, the Town should make every effort to increase and improve pedestrian crossing
facilities on NYS Route 28. For roadway corridors with posted speeds of 50mph and above, t he NYSDOT
recommendation is to implement measures to reduce operational speed s and then to consider enhanced
treatments .
Lowering operational speeds without changing the posted speed limit can be a challenge. Even if the posted
speed limit was reduced, the current roadway configuration – wide shoulders, relatively low traffic, and
unobstructed views — does not encourage drivers to slow down. One method to provide traffic calming
would be to install raised medians along NYS Route 28 as shown in the concepts in Appendix 5 . This would
emulate a boulevard, which would not only provide the visual friction to signal to drivers to slow down, but
would also add to the sense of arriving at a gateway. With careful design it may be possible to establish
landscaping fe atures within the medians, to create further visual interest. If continuous medians are not
feasible, it is recommended to install shorter sections in conjunction with the crosswalk treatments,
described further below.

21 Additional traffic calming treatment s to consider during next phase of design could be to install speed limit
markings in the roadway per the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways
(MUTCD) and the New York State Supplement; the use of speed feedback signs should a lso be considered .
With appropriate traffic calming measures in place, the use of enhanced crosswalk treatments is also
recommended. These include:
• Pedestrian crossing signs installed in advance of and at the high – visibility crosswalk (Figure 10 )
• Rectangular rapid flashing beacons (RRFBs) (Figure 10 )
• Raised median refuge island s (Figure 1 1 )
• High – intensity activated crosswalk (HAWK) beacon. (not shown)
In combination with enforcement efforts, these enhanced treatments would also contribute to traffic calming , which may lower speeds even without a change in posted speed limit. In particular, the raised median islands also offer co – benefits relating to the goal of establishing a gateway between Ski Bowl Park and the hamlet.
The location of roadway crossings is as important as their design. As stated in the Existing Conditions section of this report, there is only one designated crosswalk located at NYS 28 & Ski Bowl Road North. It is recommended that this facility should be improved to foster a safe, accessible connection between the Health Center and the Senior Center. It is also recommended that an additional crossing should be created at the intersection of NYS 28 & 28N.
Both of these location s would be appropriate for the installation of a raised median/pedestrian refuge island .
The installation of a pedestrian refuge median island is recommended in the guidelines provided by the
American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Guide for Pedestrian
Facilities, 1st Edition 2004 (or most current version) a nd the NYSDOT PSAP. The design must meet all
NYSDOT standards including the installation of detectable warnings on each side of the island. Additional
enhancements such as signage and beacons may also be beneficial. The exact configuration should be
determ ined in the design phase.

22 If a roundabout is selected as the preferred intersection treatment at NYS Route 28/28N, the pedestrian
refuge islands would be integrated directly into the design. A single – lane roundabout reduces
vehicle/pedestrian exposure to one lane at a time, similar to a refuge island. However, unlike traffic signals
which stop vehicle movement, in a roundabout motorists must yield to pedestrians in the crosswalks.
This can create challenges for visually – impaired pedestrians who may be less able to judge the
movement of approaching vehicles. This should be taken into consideration during the design phase.
In addition, the town should take advantage of the existing pedestrian underpass, which is accessed via
the Carol Thomas Memorial Trail ( see figure 12 ) . This provides a way for pedestrians to cross NYS Route 28
completely separate from traffic. This facility could be improved with features such as lighting, improved
handicap accessibility, and resurfacing, which could make it a more attractive way to access the park on
foot in the short term.
Sidewalks/Multi – use Paths
In addition to providing safe and accessible facilities to cross NYS Route 28 on foo t, pedestrian amenities
such as sidewalks and multi – use paths should also be constructed. These will ideally link to the existing
pedestrian network within North Creek.
A sidewalk /multi – use trail should be considered along the eastern leg of Ski Bowl Road North and NYS Route
28N , both of which connect to Main Street. These could tie into the recommended crosswalk locations,
providing direct access to the Park from the hamlet.
Dedicated pedestrian accommodations should also be created on the west side of NY Route 28 between Ski
Bowl Road North and South. This facility, which could be comprised of a sidewalk or multi – use path with
pedestrian level lighting , should be incorporated into the proposed redesign of the park and be located
outside the highway boundary. Similarly, the redesign effort should foster a more direct connection
between the proposed pedestrian accommodations west of NYS Route 28, the Park itself, and the Carol
Thomas Memorial Trail. Currently, thi s trail head connects to a larger network of trails within Ski Bowl Park
but does not provide direct access to the main area of the lodge, tennis courts and pavilion.
Peaceful Valley Road, which provides access to Gore Mountain, is located approximately 0.5 miles to the
south of Ski Bowl Road South. Due to the proximity of the creek on the west side of NY Route 28 between
these two roads and the steep side slopes, the best option for a connection to the park from Peaceful Valley
Road would be a dedicated trail connecting to The Loop , south of the Dr. Jacques Grunblatt Memorial Beach
near the camp sites.

23 Bicycle Recommendations
Although this study has focused mainly on improving connections for pedestrians, cyclists must be
accommodated as well. Along NYS Route 28, this can be accomplished by maintaining at least 4’ wide
shoulders within the study area. The aforementioned traffic calming will also benefit cyclists as well. In
addition, the Town should strongly consider using multi – use pathways (as opposed to sidewalks) to connect
Main Street to Ski Bowl Park along NYS Route 28N. This would allow cyclists to use the facility separate from
vehicle traffic, which is preferable to many casual cyclists. To cross NYS Route 28, these cyclists could
dismount and walk their bicycles across the roadway. More experienced cyclists could still use the vehicle
lanes as allowed un der NYS law. Within the park, multi – use paths should also be integrated to encourage
bicycle use.
Summary of Recommended Pedestrian /Bicycle Improvements:
• Install raised median/pedestrian refuge islands at the intersections of NYS 28/Ski Bowl Road North
and NYS Route 28/28N. Consider other enhancements, such as RRFBs, during the design phase.
• Install sidewalk/multi – use trail connections to Main Street on NYS Route 28N and Ski Bowl Road
North.
• Create multi – use trail west of NYS Route 28 as part of the park redevelopment effort. This should
connect to the proposed crossings as well as to the established trail system and Peaceful Valley
Road.
• Work with NYSDOT to promote traffic calming measures such as speed feedback signs, and with NYS
Police for increased enforcement efforts, to lower operational speeds on NYS Route 28 within the
study area.
• Continue to improve Carol Thomas Trail and consider promoting this as a primary pedestrian access
point as an interim solution until the crosswalks ion NYS Route 28 can be improved.

 

24 Implementation & Next Steps
As stated previously, the purpose of this study is to provide a framework for the town to pursue efforts to
reclaim/redevelop Ski Bowl Park. The intention was to provide a solid background of transportation
engineering data for future use by design professionals when the Town moves forward with the reclamation
of the gravel pit and DPW facility. The analysis contained in this document is contingent on the best available
information concerning development in and around the Park. Should conditions change significantly, the
recommendations may no longer be valid and should be reassessed.
From a planning perspective, undertaking the design of the Park and improvements to associated pedestrian infrastructure at the same time would theoretically create efficiencies which might result in reduced design costs and a shorter approval process. However, any improvements to the roadway on State – owned roadways, or which
receive Federal Highway (FHWA) funds, must adhere to NYSDOT design standards and process for locally – administered projects. This includes intersection improvements as well as any pedestrian features within the highway boundary. Historically, it has been possible to include the design of recreation park amenities within the
scope of Federally – funded alternative transportation projects; the Charles R Wood park in Lake George is a regional example. However, recent changes to funding mechanisms make it unlikely that a project with extensive recreation facilities would be likely to receive Federal transportation
dollars. Similarly, it is unlikely that the Town would be able to find sufficient funding to allow for construction
of both the Park and the transportation facilities from another source.
As such, the Town should consider pursuing a conceptual design for the Park and related transportation
improvements , which will be used to guide the implementation of the project as a whole. As stated in the
previous section, the decision to select either a traffic signal or a roundabout for the proposed 4 – way
intersection at NYS Route 28/28N should be heavily influenced by the potential design for the Park. For
example, if the existing DPW structure is to remain in place, the traffic signal option may allow more room
for the entrance road. Other non – transportation amenities like gateway treatments could also be folded into
the design, even if the construction is later conducted in phases. It would also be crucial to gain the input
from stakeholders, especially FrontStreet Development and ORDA. A single concept would also allow for
comprehensive public outreach and could help create a feasible phasing plan for construction, including
realistic cost estimates. The Town could then pursue appropriate funding channels for the Park and the
transportation facilities.

25 The drawback to this approach is that there may be some replication of steps or inefficiencies during
detailed design. As stated above, the NYSDOT design procedure would be required for improvements to NYS
Route 28. This process also mandates public input an d consideration of environmental impacts as well as an
analysis of feasible alternatives. This may lead to confusion or frustration for community members.
However, a pragmatic and transparent public information campaign can go a long way towards engendering
continuing support for the project.