Dover seeks new parking and traffic flow studies

CAMDEN — With an eye on the future, the city of Dover has requested two new traffic studies — a parking study of the downtown district and a traffic flow study for Garrison Oak Technical Park.

The requests were reviewed at Wednesday’s meeting of the Dover/Kent County Metropolitan Planning Organization council.

“It’s a comprehensive parking study for central Dover, looking at the parking supply, location for a parking garage potentially, communicating about available parking and then describing funding or determining funding for parking improvements in downtown,” said MPO Executive Director Rich Vetter.

Dover is also working with potential tenants for the Garrison Oak Tenant Park, located off White Oak Road, and a study there would

Mayor Robin Christiansen

Mayor Robin Christiansen

examine the impact of added traffic.

By seeking the traffic flow study, the city is being “proactive rather than reactive,” Mayor Robin Christiansen said.

While the mayor declined to reveal details about potential future agreements, he is hopeful. The 14-site park includes the Garrison Energy Center, as well as a manufacturing facility run by Uzin Utz.

“We feel it’s probably one of the most desirable sites in the state,” Mayor Christiansen said.

Members of the MPO transportation group are responsible for developing a comprehensive road plan for Kent County. The MPO council lists 34 road projects in its long-range plan which covers the next 24 years.

Some of those items are already included in the Department of Transportation’s current list, including the Camden bypass and the Del. Route 1-Northeast Front Street interchange, while others are currently hypothetical.

The list will not be approved by the council until January, giving the organization time to gauge public opinion.

The projects are scored using Decision Lens, a software program utilized by DelDOT to rank items based on criteria like safety and economic impact. The Crawford Carroll Road extension, which would extend the roadway from behind Lowes to a shifted Dover Mall entrance, ranks highest on the list.

The long-range plan also includes 12 other items: sidewalks, bike trails and transit facilities. The program was updated four years ago, and Kent Countians will have several months to provide input.

On Wednesday, the panel also addressed the two traffic study requests for Dover.

Several members of the public in attendance also made requests, with one seeking additional lanes on McKee and Saulsbury Roads due to safety concerns.

The MPO Council will discuss the traffic studies and long-range plans more at future meetings.

Reach staff writer Matt Bittle at mbittle@newszap.com

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