City of Shawnee

Johnson Drive Pilot Project

In both the Imagine Shawnee Strategic Plan, adopted by the Governing Body in March 2020, and the Achieve Shawnee Comprehensive Plan (currently ongoing), the community expressed support for Downtown Shawnee and the need to continue to improve pedestrian access and safety. Additional discussions and concerns have been raised specifically related to traffic speeds and pedestrian crossings on Johnson Drive.

The City has also heard from many people that there is a demand for more readily available public parking downtown. The City continues to pursue enhancements to downtown that provide ways to support our established vision and goals for a diverse, economically sustainable, unique, pedestrian-oriented, connected, and identifiable district where people and businesses thrive.

Based on the noted concerns and the City’s continued commitment to invest in Downtown Shawnee, the City has approved a pilot project concept for traffic calming on Johnson Drive. The proposed pilot project includes modifying signing and striping of Johnson Drive between Flint Street and Goddard Street from 4-lanes/5-lanes to 3-lanes, with one through lane in each direction and a dedicated center turn lane. The reduction of lanes will allow on-street parallel parking spaces to be added and will  modify some existing on-street parallel spaces to angled parking. This would allow traffic to adjust to the new configuration. There are no proposed changes to driveways or sidewalks, and curb lines would not have to change with the exception of added striped curb extensions at intersections.

Johnson Drive

Staff anticipates this project will result in:
  • Reduced speeds through downtown Shawnee on Johnson Drive. Studies have shown that for every one-foot reduction of drive lane width, the traffic speed drops three miles per hour.
  • Increase total on-street parking count from 81 to 107
  • Increase walkability, vehicle and pedestrian safety and comfort within downtown
  • Enhance business vitality
  • Emphasize downtown as a destination location instead of a pass-through route.
A number of metrics will be used to determine the success of the project, including:
  • Feedback from residents, downtown businesses, and area schools
  • Pre Pilot and During Pilot Data for:
    • Traffic counts on Johnson Drive, Goddard Street, Flint Street, and Ballentine Street
    • Travel time between Goddard Street and Flint Street
    • Delay at the Nieman and Johnson traffic signal
    • Traffic speeds
    • Accident data
    • Number of Parking Spaces

Staff will bring an analysis of these metrics and a determination on if the project was successful to the Governing Body for consideration in December 2021.

The City postponed a planned mill and overlay of Johnson Drive in 2021 in order to assess these potential changes to the roadway. The 2022 mill and overlay project will include either the original or new striping configuration to be installed in the spring, as determined by the success of the pilot project.

If you have questions or thoughts on the project, please send us an email at johnsondrive@cityofshawnee.org.