Paradise Valley town council considering a roundabout to ease traffic

An artist’s rendering of a proposed roundabout on Indian Bend Road in hopes of easing the traffic flow. Dawn Cartier of CivTech presented the proposal to the town council. (submitted photo)

Paradise Valley officials continue to look for ways to divert and “calm” an expected increase in traffic along Indian Bend Road caused by the construction of a new project connected to the Ritz-Carlton Paradise Valley Resort.

Town officials circled-back around to discuss potential traffic calming measures during a March study session after suggestions presented last fall were found unfavorable.

The Paradise Valley Town Council was presented March 22 with proposals to build a roundabout to ease Indian Bend traffic flow. The proposal was presented by Dawn Cartier, president and senior traffic engineer of CivTech, during a meeting held at Town Hall, 6401 E. Lincoln Drive.

Ms. Cartier last year presented plans to council members about installing a “swoop” — which is a soft elbow in the road that would provide a direct access into the property — to help the area, but the concept was met with resistance. The new proposal suggests dropping the “swoop” and instead, installing a roundabout.

Approval of The Palmeraie, connected to the Ritz-Carlton Paradise Valley resort by Five Star Development, reportedly represents a “high-density land use with significant traffic volumes.” A “well-conceived traffic calming plan” is required on Indian Bend Road.

Town officials want a plan that preserves Paradise Valley’s sense of community and maintain its quiet residential feel.

Officials posed a number of questions pertaining to the various options:

How are people going to get out the parking lot and into the swoop?

What are the dimensions of the roundabout?

Can there be a stop sign or some sign that wouldn’t block the area?

“I would not recommend a stop sign,” Ms. Cartier said. “It could be stopping people at all times.”

Town staff recommended constructing a modified single-lane roundabout at the entrance to Palmeraie on Indian Bend Road along with converting the existing traffic circle to a “T” intersection in conjunction with the Sept. 28, 2017, Town Council meeting where staff was directed to work with Five Star on a traffic calming solution at that included a single-lane roundabout.

Town Manager Kevin Burke said staff has been developing alternatives to the swoop option, and is now suggesting a “two-roundabout solution.”

Ms. Cartier explained the revamped concept to the Town Council.

“We were presenting the option famously known as the swoop option and we left with direction that the town would like to see the swoop be something different than what we had presented,” she said.

“So we went back to the drawing board and looked at several alternatives to move forward with this project.”

Five Star proposed a modified single lane roundabout based on the Indian Bend Road traffic statement dated March 15, with the following conclusions:

  • The proposed traffic calming is expected to reduce Palmeraie trips to/from Lincoln Drive via Indian Bend Road and Mockingbird Lane by approximately 1,510 daily trips compared to no traffic calming.
  • Trips are expected to instead travel south to Lincoln Drive via Scottsdale Road (1,130 daily trips) or through internal connections to Quail Run Lane (380 daily trips). The swoop and round-about designs allow easy access to/from Mockingbird Lane where a signalized intersection with Scottsdale Road allows favorable capacity for site access.
  • The Town of Paradise Valley can choose to monitor traffic volumes before and after reconstruction of Indian Bend Road, conducting future traffic counts at key locations before the Ritz Carlton Resort and/or the Palmeraie developments open.
  • The level of service at the intersection of Mockingbird Lane and Indian Bend Road operates overall at an “A.” The Town plans to modify the intersection of Mockingbird Lane and Indian Bend Road into a roundabout, as a separate project, possibly reducing some delays at the intersection. Since this is a separate project, evaluation of delay at the intersection is not included in this analysis.

The Town’s Mockingbird Lane Capital Improvement Project will include a roundabout at the intersection of Mockingbird Lane and Indian Bend with costs of street improvements on Indian Bend being the responsibility of Five Star Development, according to the development agreement.

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