DENVER — Residents living on Josephine and York Streets in Denver’s Elyria-Swansea neighborhood are launching a campaign to change the traffic patterns of the roads.
Right now, Josephine Street and York Street near Central 70 Project construction are one-way roads. The interstate on and off ramps for the streets were recently closed and now several neighborhood leaders are hoping to change the street patterns into two-way roads.
“Part of the issue is that Josephine is largely a residential street. York is too, but Josephine is really a very residential street in the neighborhood,” said Nola Miguel, co-director of the Globeville Elyria-Swansea (GES) Coalition Organizing for Health and Housing Justice. “It's how people walk to Swansea Elementary. It’s how you get to the Josephine shops and restaurants.”
Miguel said changing the traffic pattern on Josephine and York Streets to allow drivers to drive in both directions on the road will clear up some of the confusion.
“We get a ton of truck traffic, because we have, off York, the Purina plant right there,” Miguel said. “I’ve also almost run into cars going the wrong way.”
Miguel said semi-trucks and wrong-way drivers near homes is a bad combination.
“The coalition in particular is very concerned about this because we are developing five affordable homes on Josephine and during our groundbreaking for instance, we saw about five different large semi-trucks turn right around there, right next to where we're putting families and kids,” Miguel said.
Resident Christina Flores, who has lived on Josephine Street for 17 years, said the traffic change would be helpful.
“Well, there’s cars going the wrong way,” Flores said. “There's usually two cars going opposite ways. So they have to get out of the way to let the other one make a turn.”
Flores said allowing traffic to flow in both directions on her street will likely stop that from happening.
Miguel said the city has been receptive to changing the traffic pattern but want to wait until the I-70 expansion construction is complete to conduct a traffic study.