Belcrest Road Phasing Program

Prince George’s Plaza TDDP Implementation Program: Technical Report #1 1 Prince George’s County Planning Department Community Planning Division BELCREST Street Light Replacement Phasing Program ROAD

Transcript of Belcrest Road Phasing Program

Page 1: Belcrest Road Phasing Program

Prince George’s Plaza TDDP Implementation Program: Technical Report #1 1

Prince George’s County Planning Department

Community Planning Division

BELCREST Street Light ReplacementPhasing Program


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Prince George’s Plaza TDDP Implementation Program: Technical Report #12


This technical report off ers an alternative solution to DPW&T’s current

proposal to replace the failed street lights and conduit on Belcrest Road

with standard cobra-head street light fi xtures at 150-foot intervals

(maximum 75 feet from the end of the curb/Point of curvature) based

on DPW&T Standard 500.12 for Street Light Spacing in an Urban Area.

This report assesses the DPW&T proposal in terms of key issues that it

is intended to address. Several other critical issues are identifi ed which

should be taken into consideration by any proposal to replace the

street lights on Belcrest Road. Our report then presents and describes

in detail the suggested alternative street light replacement program

that, in our opinion, will best address all of the critical issues associated

with the ultimate goal of continuous lighting and enhanced safety for

pedestrians and bicyclists along Belcrest after dark.

The balance of this document sets forth general design

recommendations and a suggested three-phase schedule for

completion of this project.

Existing Conditions Belcrest Road

Brick Wall Landscape Green Strip Sidewalk Curb Buff er

1.6’ +/- 7.1’ +/- 7.6’ +/- 3.5’ +/- Belcrest


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Belcrest Road is the primary north-south thoroughfare in the Prince

George’s Plaza Transit District, and is envisioned to carry a signifi cant

portion of the Transit District’s north-south vehicular, transit, bicycle,

and pedestrian traffi c over the next 20 years. The street lights on

Belcrest Road have failed and require immediate replacement.

The Department of Public Works and Transportation’s Specifi cations

and Standards for Roadways and Bridges recommend traditional,

cobra-head street lights at intervals up to 150 feet. This project could

cost several million dollars. DPW&T’s proposed solution will not provide

adequate lighting for pedestrians and is wholly inadequate for the

increased pedestrian activity that future redevelopment will generate

along Belcrest Road. The standard cobra-head lighting retrofi t proposed

by DPW&T runs the risk of being inadequate and functionally obsolete

upon its completion.

The need to replace the Belcrest Road street lights presents an

opportunity for the County to invest in a highly visible and needed

public improvement that will actually produce a safe and walkable

after-dark pedestrian environment along Belcrest Road.

Key Issues Addressed by the DPW&T Proposal

1. The street lights have failed and require immediate replacement

because of their non-standard nature and functional obsolescence.

2. The cost of replacing the failed street lights and connecting conduit

is likely to encumber a signifi cant portion of the County’s limited street

lighting budget

3. The DPW&T street light replacement proposal recognizes Belcrest

Road’s importance as the Transit District’s primary north-south

thoroughfare and gateway into the area from the north.

Other Critical Issues for Consideration

4. Pedestrian Volumes: Belcrest Road sees signifi cant pedestrian

traffi c both day and night because of the major destinations that border

it (University Town Center, Mall at Prince Georges, and apartment

complexes) and the heavy use of public transit (bus and Metro).

5. Inadequate Pedestrian Lighting: Street lights at 150-

foot intervals will not provide continuous lighting of the sidewalks,

especially with the existing thick tree canopy along Belcrest Road.

6. TDDP Pedestrian Lighting Standards: Should the

preliminary Prince George’s Plaza Transit District Development Plan

(TDDP) be approved, property owners would be required to install

pedestrian-scaled street lighting at intervals not to exceed 40 feet as

redevelopment occurs, regardless of existing lighting that covers the

cartway of Belcrest Road.

7. Anticipated Pedestrian Volumes: The volume of pedestrian

traffi c along Belcrest Road is expected to greatly increase with the

redevelopment of the Landy and Percontee properties, the University

Town Center’s Toledo Road parking lot, and the Mall at Prince Georges.

As this redevelopment occurs, insuffi cient lighting along Belcrest Road

may create areas of darkness and shadow along this important

pedestrian commuting route. Future redevelopment might not occur or

succeed if residents and/or workers are concerned about the safety of

pedestrian access to the Metro station, especially after dark.

8. Cycle Track: Should the preliminary TDDP be approved, property

owners on the west side of Belcrest Road would be required to

construct, or dedicate right-of-way for, a two-way cycle track outside of

the existing west curb. Future streetscape improvements would have to

accommodate this feature.

9. Street Trees: The street trees along Belcrest Road are appropriate

for the envisioned future Downtown and should be retained.

Sidewalk material precedent

Existing tree encroaching pedestrian clear zone

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What We are Proposing

The intent of our suggested alternative street replacement program is to maintain the existing curb-to-curb dimensions and street trees while

allowing for the retrofi t of the frontage zone to support bicycling, increased pedestrian activity, and street-level commerce abutting the sidewalk in

accordance with the requirements of the preliminary Prince George’s Plaza Transit District Development Plan upon its approval.

Phase 1: The County proceeds with its current project but a) installs two-headed street lights that illuminate both the vehicular cartway and the

sidewalk and b) install new street light conduits that will allow access to power for future two-headed street lights installed at 50-foot intervals. A

new 10-foot sidewalk is also installed along the west side of Belcrest Road to serve both pedestrians and bicyclists.

Phase 2: Should an independent funding source be identifi ed, the County or other entity installs infi ll two-headed street lights at the above-

recommended 50-foot intervals. This creates the desired safe pedestrian environment and removes a signifi cant public improvement cost from the

balance sheet of future private redevelopment.

Phase 3: As redevelopment occurs, a new 10-foot sidewalk clear zone will be constructed outside of the existing tree zone and the existing sidewalk

would ultimately be retrofi tted as cycle track.

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Phase One: Installation of Replacement Street Lights and Conduit (Years 1-3)



Belcrest Road (southbound)


To construct new infrastructure that will ultimately provide continuous

lighting along Belcrest Road’s sidewalks. In this phase, DPW&T will

work with PEPCO to install initial street lights and electric conduits

while preserving existing landscape, tree canopy, and brick wall. A new

sidewalk would also be installed along the west side of Belcrest Road if

new funding is identifi ed to pay for it (see program details below).

A. New electric conduits should be placed along Belcrest Road

to support new street lights.

B. Conduit access points (marked by protective electric

conduit caps fl ush to the sidewalk) should be installed every

50 feet in order to support future closely-spaced street lights.

C. Street lights that include both elevated vehicular lamps

and lamps (approximately 14 feet high at most) focused

on the sidewalk, should be installed every 100 feet.

PEPCO’s Teardrop lamp, or similar fi xture, should be

used; such fi xtures are required of private property

owners within the Transit District.


1. Replace existing street lights.

2. Replace existing sidewalk on the west side of Belcrest Road with a

new 10-foot sidewalk (to be retrofi tted to include a cycle track in Phase


3. Install new street lights fi ve (5) feet from existing curb.

4. Place new street lights every 100 feet center-to-center.

5. Maintain existing tree canopy and landscape.

“ ” marks the

location of new lights

added in Phase Two.

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Phase Two: Installation of Infi ll Light Fixtures (Years 3-6)


To eliminate dark zones between light fi xtures by installing second

batch of street lights fi nanced by diff erent funding sources. Should this

option not prove feasible, see Phase Three.

A. New street lights should be placed every 50 feet center-to-

center from existing street lights.


1. Identify alternative funding source for construction and/or

maintenance of additional street lights.

2. Install pedestrian street lights on the previously-installed conduit

access points, with a fi ve (5)-foot setback from the existing curb.

3. Install new pedestrian street lights every 50 feet center-to-center

from existing street lights. Pedestrian street light should not be taller

than 14 feet in height.

4. Maintain the existing tree canopy and landscape.



Example of an ideal street light for Belcrest Road - Two-Headed Teardrop style

Belcrest Road (southbound)

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Phase Three: Transformation of Belcrest Road Frontage Area (Beyond Year 6)


Cycle Track





Example of mixed-use development along the cultural trail

Indianapolis Cultural Trail:

Example of a clear landscaped delineation between sidewalk, trail, and pedestrian street light.

4’ 4’ 3’

Existing Buff er(to be repainted)


To implement the Prince George’s Plaza Transit District Development

Plan as redevelopment occurs, including the required construction of

an expanded sidewalk and a cycle track (if the expanded sidewalk is

constructed in Phase 1, it would be retrofi tted to include a cycle track).

New Development:1. Development proposals must conform to the new Transit District


a. New buildings along Belcrest Road will be at a build to

line framing the sidewalk and helping to create a more active

and safe environment.

b. Property owners are required to construct a new sidewalk

clear zone outside of the existing tree zone, along with any

additional sidewalk frontage they desire to support retail/

restaurant operations.

2. New sidewalks will tie into an at-least fi ve (5)-foot-wide tree/

landscape strip. It is recommended to repurpose existing brick or

sidewalk pavement and place it between green boxes.

3. The two-way cycle track will be installed where the current (or

expanded) sidewalk meets the west-side curb, with the street lights

in its median. This is not optimal, but necessary to support cycle

traffi c while maintaining the existing curb-to-curb and not requiring

excessive re-purposing of private property for public use because of the

cycle track.


1. Maintain existing tree canopy

2. Reduce landscape strip to 5’ x 10’ green boxes.

3. Between green boxes, special stamped concrete, brick, or other

paving material should be used to demarcate a separation between

sidewalk and cycle track and allow cyclists to enter/exit the track.

4. Stripe, stamped concrete, or landscaping for clear delineation

between bicycle travel lanes.

5. Create physical barrier between the northbound cycle track and the

southbound auto travel lanes.