Albany Washington Henry Johnson slip lane repurpose 1

Albany Washington Henry Johnson slip lane repurpose 2

Albany Washington Henry Johnson slip lane repurpose 3

A piece of street with new purpose

Albany Washington Henry Johnson slip lane repurpose 1

Check out this re-purposed street segment at Washington Ave and Henry Johnson Boulevard in Albany. The segment is closed off and now serves as bus stop and parking spot for a bike share hub. (Here's how it looked before.)

That bus stop is one of the new/moved stops connected the new consolidated bus stop / pedestrian upgrades on Washington Ave at the Albany Public Library. The consolidated stop allows the #10 (Western Ave) and $12 (Washington Ave) to run straight up their respective trunk streets. (The old bus stop in front of the armory didn't allow the buses enough room to switch lanes and drive along the south side of Townsend Park.)

The transportation planner/engineer term for this sort of street segment is a "slip lane."

There are a few large format photos at the top if you'd like a closer look -- click or scroll all the way up.

They tend to make corners easier for cars -- but they can be dangerous for pedestrians. And as Angie Schmitt detailed over at Streetsblog this month, cities all around the country are repurposing these lanes. Some of the new uses are like the example above. Others have turned them into bike lanes or little pedestrian parks. (And a few have fun paint jobs.)

They also just take up space that could be used for other things -- like bikes or greenery or whatever. That Albany slip lane above represents about 1,900 square feet, according a to quick measure using Google Maps.

Comments

More retrofits or repurposes like this should be done near Quail and Partridge on Washington Ave. It would improve the feel and the quality of life in that struggling area.

Excellent. of course the sidewalk needs to be redone but this is wonderful.

Great opportunity for some street art too. Hire Albany High kids paint it. They're talented.

I fully support these changes, as it does make a safer intersection for all. I do hope the city will consider utilizing the "fun" paint jobs as featured in Streetsblog and potentially better landscaping. Right now it looks a little disjointed and only a continuation of the street pavement. It would be good to see this little slice of pavement somehow tied into the theme of Townsend Park (which needs its own inspiration and work), whether it's through raised sidewalks or green space which is always helpful with water management.

I've loved watching this space be transformed into something more useful for bus riders and CDPHPCycle - and safer for those of us crossing the street as pedestrians! I agree with other commenters that it would be even more improved with some fun painting.

I'm also glad to see the 10 and the 12 are now logically going west on Washington straight from Lark rather than the old zig zag that I never understood (thanks for explaining the purpose, Greg). This route makes so much more sense for the bus rider.

Love this project!

I also think the intersection of Watervliet Avenue, Livingston Avenue, and Third Street could use an upgrade like this. I've repeatedly seen drivers abusing the hashed lines between the bus stop and crosswalk between 3rd Street and Livingston Avenue.

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