City government is planning to change the look, width and feel of Whiteview Parkway, one of Palm Coast’s major east-west arteries.
The most visible change with the most consequences for traffic will be the reduction of the mile-long, four-lane segment at Whiteview’s west end to two lanes, in contrast with ITT’s original vision of wider east-west roads. The reduction will accommodate the addition of a foot- and bike-path, and possibly—depending on which concept is adopted—a linear park-like stretch instead of a mere path. Currently there is no path there. Some median cutthroughs would be eliminated. Some of the oak trees that line the roadway may be uprooted, but the city intends to do all it can to save the trees.
In addition, the 2.5-mile segment of Whiteview that ends at Pritchard Drive to the east will see many intersections re-engineered with the addition of turning lanes, including at Whiteview and Belle Terre Parkway.
The plan still has to be ratified by the city council, but that may be more of a formality. The design for the changes is planned to start in spring and take at least a year, according to Sean Castello, Palm Coast’s traffic engineer. Construction would then follow. The city’s capital improvement plan already has somewhere in the range of $1 million earmarked for the Whiteview project under various headings, what Carl Cote, the city’s construction manager, described as “three separate projects that kind of blended into one.”
The changes were prompted by a city traffic analysis aimed at making the roadway safer and more foot- and bike-friendly: one of the main components of the redesign is to add that path where it doesn’t exist at the moment. The other is to reduce crashes, injuries and fatalities on a road notorious for all three.
In 2015, 22-year-old Elisa Homen, mother to a young child, was killed as she waited to make a turn off Whiteview onto Ravenwood, only to be struck from behind and catapulted into the path of a school bus full of middle school children. In 2012, Pedro Riera, 48, was killed as he drove his motorcycle on Whiteview and struck a car pulling out of Rolling Sands Drive. The roadside memorials for both victims are still poignantly maintained. There are no memorials for the innumerable victims of injuries along the road—62 injured at Ravenwood Drive and Whiteview alone between 2014 and 2016, according to a city analysis, and 86 total injuries at the eight intersections with Whiteview during that stretch, from 60 documented crashes. Twenty-five crashes were rear-end collisions, 13 were left-turn collisions.
Castello and Cote presented the proposed changes to hear feedback at a public meeting this evening at the African American Cultural Society on U.S. 1, near Whiteview.
“I am a survivor of a near-fatal accident on my bicycle on the bike path in the middle of the Ravenwood intersection,” a woman said at a public meeting on the proposed changes this evening. “I had a triple skull fracture, was totally unconscious. Two things I’d like to address. Number one, have you considered making the speed limit 45 mph from one end to the other? There’s no reason why there has to be a 50 and then a 45, it’s confusing to the drivers. Number two, I have observed that intersection ever since my accident three years ago, and I have seen numerous people not even stop at that intersection on Ravenwood and just drive right out onto Whiteview. Have you not considered a traffic light? Or do we have to have a few more fatal crashes there?”
The suggestion of a uniform speed limit drew support but that for a traffic light drew groans from the relatively small crowd: only 36 people attended. Several in attendance were critical of the city’s notification procedure: only residents in close proximity to Whiteview were notified.
On the other hand, there was little opposition to the plan conceptually. The criticism, where there was any, was in the details—unhappiness with this or that particular turn lane or U-turn, more support for maintaining the existing median with two traffic lanes on either sides of it rather than going with a linear park at the south side of the median and the two traffic lanes at its north side, concern about traffic patterns from the two churches near that stretch of road, and so on. Castello and Cote may have feared that the narrowing of Whiteview to two lanes might have drawn the most objections (“this is the section that will generate a lot of questions,” Castello said as he started discussing that segment) but it did not.
Castello had already made clear that traffic on the road is relatively light. Road capacity is 44,000 vehicles per day, for four lanes. “Right now that section of roadway probably sees 5,000 to 7,000 vehicles per day,” he said, making it under-capacity even for a two-lane road. He said it is expected to remain under capacity well into the future.
Aside from the lane reduction, here are the changes and additions that would affect each intersection:
- Whiteview Pkwy at Wood Ash Lane: Eastbound Left Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Wood Aspen Lane: EB Left Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Rolling Sands Drive: Westbound Left Turn Lane, EB Right Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Woodbury Lane: EB Left Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at White Mill Drive: EB Left Turn Lane, WB Right Turn Lane, SB Right Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Whippoorwill Drive: EB Left Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Ravenwood Drive: WB Left Turn Lane, EB Right Turn Lane, NB Right Turn Lane
- Whiteview Pkwy at Princess Rose Drive: EB Left Turn Lane.
Cote said another public meeting may take place during the design phase, though that meeting would not be likely to significantly impact the result of the design.
The full analysis is below.
The Whiteview Parkway Traffic Analysis (2018)
The problem with White View Parkway is #1 the speed limit has to be reduced, #2 law enforcement traffic division has to be posted to monitor speeders and stop sign runners and fine them. That will be a deterrent.
Is not the road as Mr. Costello incorrectly believes and proposes. The city of Palm Coast should not be destroying a still perfectly paved 4 lane road planned by ITT, to remodel it when here North of Palm Coast Parkway a leak from Holland Park into the sidewalks that our residents can’t use coming from a large swamp smelling of rotten being a great mosquito breeding ground in summer, a leak that makes pedestrians go around avoiding too close to the fast also speeding traffic on Florida Park Drive. When also the manager tells us that that permanent repair of that leak “will take a while” or is on the plans..for when?. What also about the deaths child cyclist and other on Old Kings Road also fallen into the oblivious and with the same need of a walkway or safe path along of it? After all Florida Park Drive and its current blight and lack of proper landscape and maintenance after ITT-ICDC left us and same with as Old Kings road were built here way before White View Parkway was built! Needless to say the need for the repair and improve of our too old often flooded sewer system North of Palm Coast Parkway on Clubhouse Drive sewer lift stations with the emergency sirens going all night keeping us awake to remind us sewer overflowing.
Again in 2018 our taxes are assigned first to all projects South of Palm Coast Parkway ? Can our council answer us why and when are we going to see our mentioned problems above resolved North of Palm Coast Parkway? After all we pay taxes also and some pay double taxes water front to deserve this obliviousness.
Please nothing against those residents of White View as per Mr. Costello they will see a 4 lane road reduced to two…? But still full of speeders and stop sign runners just closer together then…to make it safer! Who is contracted for those miles of re-pavement, as as far as I know city does not own paving equipment…just curious! And very important how much over the one million already assigned the whole enchilada White View Parkway will cost us all? Current council and administrators spend money like drunken sailors in what is not a priority again lately again Community Center and Public Works Lot…what about our sewer and drainage.
IMO think this is a good idea, would also like to see a path even a narrow one, on Wynnfield Dr, cars drive to fast and the street has to be shared by walkers, drivers, kids waiting for school bus, etc. swale area seems wide in most areas to put in a small walking path (sidewalk).
I can not understand why so much attention and money is going to be put to a road that has 5-7k cars using it daily. It seems to be a waste of taxpayers money to remove a 4 lane road that is in good condition especially if it is under used. Adding a few stopn signs and increasing patrols would be a more cost effective way to increase safety. All the money could be spent on projects that impact many people.
Just the truth says
Are they adding lights??????????????????????? so people can see better at night???????????????
Stupid is as stupid does. Traffic will only increase on this road in the future, so pay now, to downsize now,for people walking their Poodles and pay again to re-widen the road when it gets too congested in the future. Smarrrrt!
The city is growing meaning more vehicles on the roadways. Seems to me it would make more sense to make Whiteview four lanes from US1 to Belle Terre. As far as a foot and bike path I think PC has more than enough paths for these activities. It appears someone in city government is an avid bike rider and has an agenda to build bike paths everywhere. This city needs sidewalks and street lights. Why not address these issues.
2B Gon Shortly says
Another giant step….backwards
crosstown traffic says
So the city is growing again and these are spending money to shrink streets?
It seems as if this money could be spent elsewhere on sidewalks and streetlights (see: incidents on Old Kings Drive, for instance) and we would get much more out the money being spent. It’s time to be proactive and fix these problems, not take a step back. It’s a lot better to place streetlights and sidewalks where needed, instead of taking away lanes of a perfectly okay road that could use stop signs and a reduced speed limit instead.
John Brady says
Four reasons not to widened Whiteview
1. One million plus
2. Not needed
3. Ever increasing population creating more traffic
4. Potentially more accidents
In spite of a double line on two lane highways, I have experienced knuckle heads crossing the lines and passing on Pine Lakes Parkway
Please lets all drive White View Parkway and that should include the Council and Mayor and see for yourselves the waste of millions of our dollars in the useless dig out and remodel of a road that planned by ITT-ICDC is in perfect condition now and that includes one of the widest walkaways in this city along it and the lucious landscape and metal resting benches and trash and recycable cans that we only dream off in Florida Park Drive and Old Kings Road North of Palm Coast Parkway.
Mr. Costello Traffic Engineer is incorrect,,,the problem is the high speed limit of 45 and 50 and even worst than the non monitored speeders, stop sign runners and tailgaters like I experienced today just riding it once: one stop sign runner and one tailgating me on the right lane while I was a 45 speed limit simple because the fast left lane occupied too, both young men. A meeting with sheriff Staly is needed to provide some law enforcement traffic in White View Parkway ticketing the three violations and that will deter them and solve the problem. While driving back the Palm Coast Parkway that we know has/had many accidents and deaths including sadly those of children because speeders, I witnessed another stop sign violator that made me brake, but that will be no excuse to dig out our PC Parkway too, right? I hope that as reported, all is approved by the administrators and is not so and that our council stops this waste of our taxpayers monies into the millions. As far as I know the meeting at the AACCC was attended only by a small group of residents notified by the city and the rest of us were not aware of it. Already affected residents are concerned of the unnecessary mayhem that will create with that area of Belle Terre and Rte 1 traffic during that useless construction closure. I even saw installed on the WV Parkway one our so many times requested signs of NO LITTER $500 Fine, but here North of Palm Coast Parkway on Clubhouse Drive, Florida Park Drive and Old Kings Road is not being granted our request the manager at least, if so. Already people that I spoke are concerned as much as I am. Lets stop the waste and use our taxes for priorities like repairing our decaying infrastructure sewer and drainage. And if Mr. Costello will come up with the total figures and grans are to be used for that parkway to be re-done instead use them in Florida Park Drive, and Old Kings road where really needed as OKR doesn’t have the needed sidewalk for the kids to school or ride their bikes and few deaths have occur there too.
Par for the course for a city that throws away over 100K on a golf course and by last estimate and equal amount of money on a tennis course.
Harrison H. McDonald PE says
Idiotic waste of money..
another vet says
the problem isn’t the roads, it’s the people driving on them
@ Just the truth says:
February 1, 2018 at 9:02 am
Are they adding lights??????????????????????? so people can see better at night???????????????
Guess what there is a solution its called YOUR HEAD LI(GHTS.
Concerned Citizen says
I drive this road every day. Narrowing it down to 2 lanes is not the answer. Personal Accountability is. People speed, drive distracted and run stop signs all day long.
You can put lower speed limits and cops on this road all day long. Until people decide to stop driving like jack asses then it will continue to be a dangerous stretch of road..
We need to stop pointing the fingers at cosmetic changes. Start reflecting on driving habits and change them. It all starts behind the wheel
Industrial Parker says
I use Whiteview often and observe other drivers using it. I think the plan makes sense. Look at Palm Coast Pkwy. I think that turned out great.
Chris A Pickett says
I live adjacent to Whiteview PKWY where it is ALREADY 2 lanes, and I hear people racing on it NIGHTLY. This has got to be one of the most foolish decisions to be made. In this time of ever increasing populations, one would think WIDENING roads and adding more lanes would be the wise thing to do. BEtter to teach people how to drive. For example, when you come to a red green light and YOU are right, YOU DO NOT YIELD the right of way to those turning LEFT. Also if you are driving on the left lane below the speed limit. GET OVER to THE RIGHT. Also perhaps the morons left onto Belle Terre at PINE GROVE could turn right and then make a U turn cause it seems these people cannot yield to the traffic on BElle Terrre. There are accidents there nearly every week and MOST ALWAYS because of the imbeciles turning left.
Chris A Pickett says
Strategically placed LARGE speed bumps would remedy this at a fraction of the cost/
Spend all that money to remove perfectly good traffic lanes? If the growth in Palm Coast continues like it is by the time they finish removing the lanes they will wish we still had them. I would rather they plan for the future traffic needs and start adding lanes to make four lanes all the way to Belle Terre.