In 2002, the MPO Thoroughfare Plan was updated and expanded to include the newly identified urban area and was jointly adopted by both the MPO and the North Carolina Department of Transportation. The Thoroughfare Plan classifies roads into freeway/expressways and major and minor thoroughfares. To identify a finer grain street and highway system for local planning purposes, an additional classification of road type needs to be included – Collector Streets.
What are Collector Streets?
The primary function of a collector street is to gather traffic from the local residential or commercial street system and deliver it to the closest minor or major thoroughfare. Collector streets provide both local access to adjacent properties and mobility for vehicles and other modes of transportation. Collector streets are an intermediate link supplying important continuity in the functional system between the local street with unlimited access and the thoroughfare roads meant to efficiently carry higher volumes of traffic at higher speeds and with limited access.
Collector streets generally are designed for shorter trip lengths and have lower traffic volumes in the 1,000 to 3,000 vehicles per day range than thoroughfares which carry more traffic. Collector streets provide alternative routes and additional circulation within the area circumscribed by thoroughfares. The increased connectivity afforded by collector streets creates safer routes for sidewalks and pedestrians, bicycles and school buses. Additionally, response times for emergency vehicles can be reduced and routing of transit services and public works functions such as garbage collection, recycling and snow removal are enhanced.
Collector Streets balance access and mobility and provide a necessary connection between the local roads where people begin their daily trips and the roads that carry commuters to their jobs. A well connected system of collector and local roads can relieve thoroughfares of short trip congestion.
For more information, you may contact:
Department of Transportation
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