The free-for-all mentality experienced by drivers traversing the intersection of Mill Road and Main Street in Westhampton Beach Village could soon be a thing of the past.
During last week’s Village Board meeting, Westhampton Beach Village Planner Kyle Collins presented renderings of what that intersection, and the remainder of Main Street, could look like if the board moves forward with plans to install curb extensions and bump-outs along the central business district corridor.
Though Mr. Collins offered multiple options, the end result for each was a narrower Mill Road that would intersect Main Street more perpendicularly—a design that Mr. Collins said will make drivers approach the area in a slower, more controlled manner.
“It reduces the width physically and visually, having a calming effect on traffic and speeds,” Mr. Collins said. “It reduces the pedestrian crossing distance and it increases visibility of the intersection.”
The bump-outs, which can either be plain hard structures or have light landscaping, reduce the turn radii on curbs down to between 10 and 15 feet instead of the 20 to 25 feet now required at both Mitchell Road and Sunset Avenue, or 125 feet, which is now the case on Mill Road.
For some of the narrower streets, like Library Avenue, Mr. Collins said the village could simply add small curb extensions to reduce the turning radius of vehicles while leaving the crosswalk distance as-is. That work is expected to cost roughly $15,000 per corner, while the bump-outs, like the ones needed along Mill Road, are projected to cost about $25,000 each, on average.
Mr. Collins also discussed the possibility of adding a mini traffic circle in the troublesome intersection, which would have to be at least 45 feet in diameter and cost between $150,000 and $200,000 to install. He did not create a rendering of the traffic circle because he said that would have to be handled by a traffic engineer.
The renderings Mr. Collins presented to the board will be used in a grant request that the village will submit to the state with the intent of securing funds to help offset the cost of a Main Street overhaul. The application for that grant is due on June 1.