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DOT's plan for Green Bay Road concern some officials

Elements need redesigning to cut down on crashes

Dec. 4, 2012

Brown Deer - It's still five years into the future, but discussion of a planned resurfacing project along Green Bay Road is heating up in Brown Deer.

Representatives from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation came before the Village Board on Monday with a presentation of the proposed work, slated to take place in 2018. Their visit was a prelude to an open house-style public information meeting next month.

The project along Green Bay Road starts as far south as Teutonia Avenue and extends north into the municipal border with Mequon.

In addition to road resurfacing, one of the most notable elements of the DOT's project includes razing and replacing the bridge that extends over Brown Deer Road. The interchange at Green Bay Road and Teutonia Avenue is also being examined.

DOT runs the show

Green Bay Road, part of the state's highway system, falls under the purview of the DOT, not the county or village. Ultimately, the DOT has final authority on the components of the work being contemplated.

However, in recent years village staff and board members have been meeting with the DOT and its hired civil engineering firm, Crispell Snyder, in an effort to have input into the project.

"Staff has provided several suggestions, some of which have been accepted and others which have not," said Nate Piotrowski, community development director.

One item on Piotrowski and other Brown Deer staff members' wish lists is installation of a sidewalk along what is one of the village's more heavily traveled corridors. New federal mandates require installation of sidewalks and bike lanes when an extensive resurfacing project takes place along a main highway.

But several requested items have not been included in the DOT's tentative plans - including a number of suggestions Piotrowski said are designed to mitigate traffic backups and crashes in the future.

Roundabout request

One item Brown Deer staff would like included in the resurfacing work is a roundabout at the Green Bay and Teutonia intersection. Another item absent in the work plans are traffic signals at Green Bay and County Line roads.

Also under review is the overpass at Green Bay and Brown Deer roads. Brown Deer staff are requesting a reconfiguration of the existing layout, but a team of consultants recommended keeping it as-is.

"The consultant report suggested the current configuration was most suitable and cost effective," Piotrowski said.

Trustee Tim Schilz said he was frustrated more changes were not implemented into the DOT's plans.

"Keeping it the way it is is going to continue with the crashes," Schilz said, pointing out his concerns about accidents along the highway.

Trustee Terry Boschert said he was concerned about the existing configuration at Green Bay Road and Ruth Place - an entryway into the Original Village area of Brown Deer.

"There's not a lot of room to try and maneuver," Boschert said of the intersection. "When I want to turn, I wind up right next to the curb, and I think that could be improved. To me, a lot of this looks more like resurfacing and repaving, rather than a redesign."

The village does not have to contribute any funds into the DOT project unless any cosmetic work - like signage and lighting fixtures - is included.

NEXT STEP

WHO:representatives from Wisconsin Department of Transportation

WHAT: public open house meeting on Green Bay Road resurfacing project

WHEN: 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Jan. 8

WHERE: Brown Deer Village Hall, 4800 W. Green Brook Drive

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