Mayor Esther Manheimer, on October 9th, joined by future-Councilman Vijay Kapoor, met with 120 Haw Creek residents in Evergreen Charter School to discuss safe walking and biking in Haw Creek. Also present were Anna Henderson and Troy Wilson of the N.C. Dept. of Transportation.
The mayor reported about bond referendum scheduled improvements–a sidewalk on New Haw Creek from Beverly to Bell Rds–scheduled for a 2019/2020 time frame. While certainly a needed and welcome improvement, many residents spoke up about the need for a more comprehensive approach to pedestrian and bike safety in the Haw Creek valley.
This desire for a more holistic approach to the safety needs of our growing community has evolved into the ‘Move Haw Creek’ campaign. In two follow up meetings since the mayor’s meeting, Haw Creek community members have identified and prioritized four community values they would like incorporated into any proposed improvements.
In order of priority, the four community values to be addressed in any improvements ought to be:
Next, Move Haw Creek volunteers identified five potential improvements that may improve pedestrian and bike safety in the Haw Creek valley. Small groups–including any interested resident–will be evaluating these five ideas for feasibility.
The five ideas to be evaluated for improving pedestrian and bike safety in the Haw Creek valley are:
- Widening New Haw Creek and Old Haw Creek Roads (to create a dedicated space for bike lanes and/or sidewalks)
- Greenway in the Haw Creek creek floodplain (to create a dedicated off road space for walking and biking)
- Make one-way portions of New Haw Creek and Old Haw Creek roads (to free up a lane as a dedicated safe space for walking and biking)
- Additional sidewalks (create additional dedicated safe space for walking)
- Increase traffic calming (to slow traffic thereby making walking and biking safer)
As the evaluation of these ideas is just getting underway, any interested Haw Creek resident is welcome to participate. Please email us at Movehawcreek@gmail.com to indicate your interest.
After evaluating for feasibility, we are hopeful of having a community discussion in 2018 about which options may or may not work for our community.
Brendan Beers, Thomas Wolfe and Chris Pelly