City crews and contractors are ready to implement recommended changes at Library Square to improve traffic flow and safety of both drivers and pedestrians. Work is slated to begin Wednesday night and would continue Thursday and Friday nights, but it’s all contingent on the weather.
As for changes, they were recommended after a study by Paragon Consulting, which came after the initial Library Square couplet opening and it became clear that there was room for improvement.
Public Works Director Michael Fuss said he appreciates everyone’s patience as the city and engineers worked through the process.
“After watching the traffic at these four intersections and giving drivers a chance to learn the new traffic patterns, we believe these improvements should make a difference in safety and overall function,” Fuss said.
The recommendations were approved by City Council last fall, but work couldn’t be done until the weather warmed up. If the temperatures aren’t warm enough next week to lay down the paint, some of the work may have to be delayed.
Four modifications will be made: 1) Eastbound drivers on 3rd Street South will now have two thru lanes at 12th Avenue South, which will reduce traffic building up in the middle lane.2) Northbound lanes on 12th Avenue South will be reduced to two lanes at 3rd Street South to reduce the number of lane changes necessary to get drivers into the correct lane before reaching the intersection of 12th Avenue South and 2nd Street South. 3) Modify the lane striping through the intersection of 12th Avenue South and 2nd Street South to improve traffic flows to northbound 11th Avenue. 4) Eliminate one of two southbound right-turn lanes on 12th Avenue South to reduce pedestrian conflicts at the intersection of 12th Avenue South and 2nd Street South.
The modifications will require striping, posting of additional signage, changing some of the signal heads and making sure the programming of the signal lights is correct.
Work each night is scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. and wrap up each morning by 5 a.m. Again, the schedule is contingent on the weather next week.