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Cary Planners Looking to Ease Future Traffic Problems

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CARY — Cary is the land of rapid growth, and it is also home to fast-growing traffic problems. Town planners say they want to study the way people drive to better prepare for future traffic troubles.

The daily commute just is not what it used to be. Instead of one person leaving the suburbs for the city, now the whole family is involved in the daily drive.

Both parents are working, and kids have soccer and school activities.

It is tough to plan for and react to changing traffic patterns, not to mention the congestion those changes create, but Cary planners are going to try.

The key is the person behind the wheel.

"Drivers will simply be handed a little survey card. It's a postage paid, pre-paid mail card. You can take it home and fill it out when you like. It's totally anonymous. You don't have to tell us who you are or anything about you," says planner Scott Ramage.

At various locations, mainly in downtown Cary, drivers will be guided through traffic cones, and contract crews will hand out the surveys.

Police will supervise, hoping to keep traffic moving along.

Motorists will start to see the surveys over the next few days on the streets of Cary, but some of Cary's drivers are already offering suggestions.

"Make the lights longer, lights that are on timers. And put feelers at every intersection. That's always a good thing," says motorist Charlie Taylor.

"Fix the potholes and time the traffic lights better," suggest Walter and Lou Wilson.

The idea is to come up with a transportation model that will help planners map out the course for traffic over the next 20 years.

The planners say their concept is simple, studying where people go to help them get where they are want to be.

The traffic survey will cost Cary $12,500. Results should be available in about two months.


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