SR184 and UPRR Grade Separation - Kern County
JLB Traffic Engineering, Inc. (JLB), as a Subconsultant to NCM Engineering Corporation, prepared a Traffic Engineering Performance Assessment (TEPA) for the proposed State Route 184 (Morning Drive) at Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) grade separation located in Kern County. The TEPA provided a macrolevel analysis of the traffic operations under the Existing 2014 and Year 2040 No-Build traffic condition scenarios and two (2) Year 2040 Project Build alternatives. The primary purpose of the TEPA was to identify the traffic forecasting and traffic studies needed to analyze, evaluate and more accurately predict or estimate operational and safety performance of the proposed “Build” alternatives during the Project Approval and Environmental Document (PA&ED) Phase.
JLB’s staff collected peak hour (7:00-9:00 AM and 4:00-6:00 PM) intersection turning movement counts at four (4) major street intersections. Based on the findings of the TEPA, the “Build” alternatives were projected to improve local traffic circulation and provide better intersection operations than those of the “No-Build” alternative. Furthermore, the “Build” alternatives would remove an existing at-grade railroad crossing that would reduce delays and improve safety related to train traffic across the existing SR 184 and the UPRR. Under the 2040 No-Build scenario, all the study intersections were projected to operate at an unacceptable level of service (LOS). The LOS tables presented in the TEPA illustrated the potential performance, benefits, project features, scope and magnitude of traffic engineering work to be performed during the PA&ED Phase.
A “Build” alternative was recommended to improve the LOS, traffic operations, queuing and traffic safety at the study intersections. Under both “Build” alternatives, acceptable LOS and traffic operations were projected. Additionally, both “Build” alternatives would eliminate the at-grade railroad crossing between SR 184 and the UPRR. Removal of the at-grade crossing will improve traffic safety and reduce emergency vehicle response times when compared to the “Existing” and “No-Build” traffic condition scenarios.