You may think improving traffic flow would mean building bigger, faster roads, when the solutions really center on human behavior. Check out this video that looks at moving cars better through combining common sense, driver habits, and inventive engineering. It's enlightening!
top of page
We encourage open and honest communication without censorship, however, we ask that there be no use of foul or threatening language. Respectful banter can be a useful tool to learn and promote positive outcomes. Thank you for lending your voice to the community
bottom of page
Mountain Lake Park's Mayor and Town Council have invited the State Highway Administration to present the latest on the Oakland Bypass on June 7th. No details yet, but a great opportunity to get many questions answered.
Tolls are economically flexible told and can be variable as well. We should not be lulled into thinking we will have a single toll for everyone. There could be out of town rates, locals rates, Etc. Also Peak and non-peak season rates. The key of course would be modeling all of this out of time in a cost simulation, working out different users total costs across a year for comparison.
We need metrics on the increase of traffic flow during peak tourist seasons to determine how many coming to Oakland are making Oakland their end destination as opposed to going further up to Thomas Davis or Canaan Timberline area (or other destinations further a field). That would help clarify if a toll might be useful or not.
You bring up an interesting and new point. There has been no discussion of a toll attached to the bypass to my knowledge. The last data I recall showed 122 trucks from 219 N entering Oakland and the same on 219 S exiting Oakland which would indicate pass-through truck traffic. Some may have local deliveries in downtown but that's uncertain in the data. Running the numbers on what would be an acceptable toll by commercial drivers on a rural route raises my curiosity. Some bypasses are built and not utilized to the expectations of transportation planners without full understanding of social behaviors. Passing through Oakland may be a pleasant diversion from endless miles of travel. Worth asking a few truckers.
Before I say something that that pegs me as an inhibitor to progress, or advocate something too pie in the sky to be possible, I think it's first necessary to establish as this article implies that human behavior will change with the appropriate incentives. Those incentives or disincentives may seem unpalatable to one political persuasion or the other, but at the end of the day, data manifests people do not always adhere ardently to their beliefs when behavioral incentives are appropriately applied. Traffic is probably one of the more obvious ways to see this. But I digress.
I'm curious if anyone has considered a bypass for commercial trucks and making it a toll road for everyone else. Obviously we would want to determine a yearly income which the city may feel they would lose based on diverted traffic, and set the toll appropriately to either make up for that, or to continue to steer non-commercial vehicles through our great small town.
Initial toll would have to be relatively pricey, but could slowly be lowered to find the appropriate balance. The toll money would then be used for all the necessary improvements to downtown to make it even more appealing and usable for tourist traffic. I am not absolutely married to this idea, I just wonder if that has been discussed as an option, or if anybody knows where this may have been attempted in any other small towns.