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One element of cross-section design that is often overlooked is the accommodation of public utilities. Overhead utilities typically include electric, telephone, and cable television. For new construction in urban areas, electric, telephone, and other telecommunication lines are now often placed underground.



Motor vehicle collisions with utility poles result in approximately 10 percent of all fixed-object fatal crashes in the United States annually. Utility poles also have a negative affect on the aesthetics of a roadway. It is important, therefore, whether designing in rural or urban locations, to consider accommodating utilities early in the design process.

Article Icon Article / Paper / Report A Guide for Reducing Collisions Involving Utility Poles
Utility pole crashes are fixed-object crashes that involve vehicles leaving the travel lane, encroaching on the roadside, and striking a utility pole.

Utility poles can also contribute to the severity of other crash types. Many crashes are not classified as ROR or fixed-object crashes where one or more vehicles strike a utility pole. Crashes are often classified by "first harmful event." In some cases, striking the utility pole is a secondary event that may be as severe as, or more severe than, the first harmful event. Crashes involving utility poles as secondary events easily go unnoticed when examining the total magnitude of the utility pole crash problem.
--  American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officals
Book Icon Book High Performance Infrastructure Guidelines: Best Practices for the Public Right-of-Way
This publication provides a roadmap for incorporating 'best management practices' into New York City's right-of-way infrastructure capital program.
-- Design Trust for Public Space
Excerpt IconExcerpt Cross-Section Elements: Curbs
There are two types of curbs: barrier and mountable. Both in urban and suburban environments curbs serve functions such as drainage control, roadway edge delineation, and right-of-way reduction.  more...
from  Flexibility in Highway Design
Excerpt IconExcerpt Cross-Section Elements: Utilities
Public utilities are a often overlooked but important element of crossection design. "Overhead utilities typically include electric, telephone, and cable television. For new construction in urban areas, electric, telephone, and other telecommunication lines are now often placed underground."  more...
from  Flexibility in Highway Design
Carson Street Reconstruction
Torrance, CA
Carson Street is a major east-west arterial street running through the middle of the city of Torrance, CA. High levels of traffic congestion on the original four-lane undivided cross sections and the absence of left-turn lanes were responsible for a high rate of accidents on this predominately residential street. After roadway improvements, curb, gutter, and sidewalks were added along both sides of the entire project to provide improved roadway drainage and to accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists. However, it's the improvement to the general aesthetics of the street, including the undergrounding of utilities, that is a major distinguishing feature of the project.
Copenhagen retail street




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