Shelburne Falls Road Working Group

The Falls Road Working Group (FRWG) is an informal group of local residents and members of Shelburne's business community who seek to make Shelburne Village, specifically the section of Falls Road between Church Street and Route 7, a safe and vibrant walkable and bikeable place. In their first year of work, the FRWG created a mission statement, a vision for Falls Road between Church Street and Route 7, and a shared values statement; and identified five high level strategies to pursue.

The five high level strategies are:

  1. Traffic calming to 20 mph or below on Falls Road for shared motor vehicle/bike use
    • (ideas in play: gateway treatment, centerline removal, lane narrowing, raised crosswalks, curb extensions, new crosswalks, pedestrian-scale street lights, etc.).
  2. Convert the existing "herd path" behind Falls Road businesses to a paved shared use path for people walking, biking and rolling and provide connectivity to Falls Rd. sidewalk via a paved connection between Falls Road shops.
  3. Improve the pedestrian crosswalk across the access to the Shelburne Shopping Park and Barkeaters Restaurant
    • (ideas in play: reduce crossing distance, create pedestrian refuge, consider more efficient utilization of road space, etc.).
  4. Improve sidewalk quality, including filling gap in front of the Shelburne Country Store.
  5. Develop a plan to optimize car and bike parking
    • [ideas in play: public/private partnerships, MOUs (memorandums of understanding) to enable shared parking, signage, re-configure existing parking; bike parking incentives, etc.].

A community survey was conducted in the Fall of 2023. It showed strong support for the vision, values and high level strategies identified by the FRWG. This work, along with recommendations for next steps, was presented to the Shelburne Select Board at their November 28, 2023 meeting. With support from the Select Board, the group is developing conceptual designs for public consideration as well as opportunities to test new street infrastructure in their second phase of work. All meeting documentation can be found in the group's Rolling Minutes.

Plans are underway to demonstrate a traffic calming/pedestrian safety makeover this summer. The project is expected to include new and modified crosswalks, a new walking lane, street art, speed cushions, in-street pedestrian signs, slow street signage, bike parking and more. Motor vehicle travel will still be permitted on this section of Falls Road and there will be no impact to car parking. The goal of this project is to right-size the Falls Road context to be more people-centered and less autocentric.

This is a community-led project, so please feel welcome to participate. Meetings are open to the public. They take place 8-9 AM on the first and third Thursdays of the month. Meetings are held in Meeting Room 2 in the Town Offices on the first Thursdays and the Pierson Library on the third Thursdays. Whenever possible, an option to participate remotely is also offered.

For more information or to receive a meeting video conference link, please contact Susan Grasso at¬†[email protected].