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Those commuting along the Route 111 corridor in Biddeford regularly experience congestion, especially in the evening. City officials have expressed concern regarding the challenge of traveling to and from Maine Turnpike Exit 32 from the downtown. On December 14, a public meeting will take place to hear firsthand from the public on how these conditions affect them, and to provide details about a new study that is evaluating a range of alternatives to improve safety and mobility along the Route 111 corridor and at the Exit 32 Interchange.
The study will look at conditions along Route 111 west of the Maine Turnpike to downtown Biddeford. It will also look at conditions to the east, including a potential new road connection running north-south between Route 111 and South Street west of downtown. Partnering on this effort are the City of Biddeford, Maine Turnpike Authority, and the Maine Department of Transportation. A webpage with more details is available on the City of Biddeford website at https://www.biddefordmaine.org/Exit32AlternativesStudy.
The study will determine to what degree a new road -- or other transportation alternatives –could reduce traffic congestion and improve safety along Route 111 and at Exit 32, including major intersections between Exit 32 and downtown Biddeford. In addition to safety concerns, multiple intersections in this area are failing in terms of Levels of Service (defined as the ability to move a sufficient number of vehicles through at peak travel periods). A new road would also provide a more direct route from the Turnpike to downtown neighborhoods, while removing vehicles from the intown/Route 111 system traveling from Dayton points west to the interchange. The study will also evaluate the impact of a new road or other transportation alternatives on economic development opportunities in Biddeford. In considering alternatives, the study will also keep in mind what funding might be reasonably available for any future project.
The meeting will take place in the Biddeford City Council Chambers, at 6 pm through 7:30 pm. For those who prefer, there will also be a remote option via Zoom. Participants will be able to ask questions and make comments live, either in the Council Chambers or via Zoom from home: https://biddeford.zoom.us/j/94875382890?pwd=VWZMTlQ2SktNS2N1OEM4QzJEN0J3UT09 Webinar ID #948 7538 2890 Passcode #771180
Along with the primary purpose of hearing from the public, the meeting will give participants a picture of the current conditions in the study area in terms of traffic volumes and crash data, as well as a look at the Maine Turnpike Authority’s plan to upgrade the Exit 32 ramps in 2024. Additional public meetings will take place in spring and fall of 2022 to hear feedback from the public on recommended solutions developed as a result of study data and the public’s input.