Running a Pop-up Demonstration Project
Pop-ups and pilots are all ways of temporarily demonstrating the value of a walk-bike project in your community without having to commit to it long term. Pilots typically last for at least one year and pop-ups for a shorter amount of time, typically a week or less. Both use low cost, non-permanent materials such as planters, flexible bollards, spray chalk and cones to temporarily reconfigure the street. Survey and observational data can be collected before and after the demonstration to help decision-makers understand project benefits and impacts.
Typical projects where pilots or pop-ups are used are:
- Curb extensions
- Traffic calming
- 4-to-3 lane reconfiguration (aka "road diet")
- Pedestrian refuges/crossings
- Bike lanes (protected, buffered, conventional)
- Bike boxes
Open Streets BTV is an opportunity to experience our public streetscape in an entirely different way. For one day every summer about 3 miles of Burlington streets are closed to everything but pedestrian access for a day of biking, walking, dancing, and whatever else you can imagine!
As part of the Downtown-Basin Master Plan public input process, the City of Vergennes and its community partners held a series of pop-up demonstration projects to illustrate how the streets connecting Downtown and the Basin could be made safer and more walk and bike friendly. Partners and volunteers used spray chalk and traffic cones to demonstrate the concepts below:
- bike lanes
- curb extensions/bulb‐ outs
- pedestrian refuge islands
In addition, an information kiosk, which has long been recommended, was constructed in Falls Park.
An information tent at the Vergennes Green provided project information and allowed observers to share their reactions to the demonstrations with staff and Steering Committee members. Along with input gathered during the walking tours, this feedback provided the basis for the Issues and Recommendations for the Downtown-Basin Master Plan.
The demonstration projects were helpful because they offered “proof of concept” of the feasibility of the preliminary recommendations, for example, that there is enough roadway width to accommodate bicycle lanes, and that curb extensions work to slow driving speeds and increase pedestrian visibility.
Photo above: Cones were used to demonstrate a pedestrian refuge island while maintaining adequate travel lane widths.
Staff and volunteers use spray chalk to mark out a 5' bike lane while maintaining VTrans' recommended 11' travel lane for an arterial.
A 5' bike lane with a 2' buffer was demonstrated while maintaining 11' width for trucks in the adjacent travel lane.
Traffic cones show how a curb extension would decrease traffic speeds while reducing pedestrian exposure to vehicles.
The hay bale and cone show how a curb extension would work to shorten pedestrian crossing distances and calm traffic.
A gateway sign on the west side of the bridge was placed to show drivers that they were approaching the village and should adjust speeds accordingly.
Near the end of summer 2017, the Town of Middlebury, Local Motion, Better MiddleburyPartnership, Middlebury Safe Routes, and Addison County Regional Planning Commission embarked on a collaboration to create safer and slower streets throughout town.
- Seymour Street, between former Gregg’s Market and Main Street - temporary crosswalks and curb bumpouts installed
- Maple Street entering the Marbleworks - Created a protected "pedestrian advisory lane" in the absence of sidewalks along this busy walking street.
- Merchant’s Row and Main Street - curb bump outs installed to shorten the pedestrian crossing distance and to make pedestrians more visible.
An opinion survey was distributed as part of the evaluation process at: VIVID Midd: Middlebury Bicycle and Pedestrian Pop-up Demonstration projects. Thank you for helping us design safer, more beautiful streets for bicycles and pedestrians. The feedback helps us evaluate future improvements to our Downtown!