Issues to be addressed
A recent Madison Beltline Safety and Operations Study documented a number of issues associated with this freeway corridor:
- Motor Vehicle Operations
- Roadway safety concerns
- Increasing travel demand and congestion on and across the freeway
- Limited accommodations for, and integration of, alternate modes of travel
- Aging pavement and structures
These issues can lead to unreliable travel times, higher travel costs, and negative economic and environmental consequences for area residents, commuters, businesses, and freight movements.
To address these issues, a Planning and Environment Linkages (PEL) Study is underway that will develop, evaluate and screen broad regional solutions.
The Madison Beltline PEL Study is a planning-level development and analysis of the effectiveness of all possible solutions to the Madison Beltline's current and long-term future needs; in particular, determining to what extent possible solutions would address the existing safety, capacity and geometric issues and meet identified study objectives.
In addition to improvements to and across the Beltline itself, changes or improvements to alternate modes of travel, other area transportation corridors, and existing Beltline connections to the adjacent road network are expected to be analyzed.
Issues and impacts that may result from each potential solution will be documented. Those solutions not addressing issues and needs will be dismissed.
The study outcome will be a description of all strategies considered and documentation showing whether, and to what extent, each addresses the existing Beltline issues and accommodates future growth in the Madison area.
Potential strategies that do not solve Beltline issues or are not reasonable will not be studied in the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) environmental analysis process (which will follow the PEL Study).
What happens next?
The NEPA environmental analysis process that will follow the PEL Study will conduct a detailed investigation of all strategies developed in the PEL study that have the potential to address Beltline issues.
The potential strategies will be refined as needed to solve Beltline issues and minimize and mitigate impacts and cost.
The NEPA analysis will ultimately produce a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) or Environmental Assessment (EA) detailing the preferred corridor and improvement locations.