Archive for Wednesday, November 6, 2002

KDOT does traffic count at Sixth Street intersection

November 6, 2002

Baldwin City got what it was asking for last week.

For 24 hours, beginning last Tuesday, the Kansas Department of Transportation conducted a traffic count at the intersection of Sixth Street and U.S. Highway 56.

The traffic count will be used to determine whether a traffic signal is warranted at the intersection.

"We don't have any information yet," City Administrator Larry Paine said. "We won't be hearing from them for awhile."

Paine said it could take anywhere from a few weeks to a couple of months to get the results of the traffic count from KDOT.

"After they pull the counters, they take them back and run them through analysis testing," he said.

Several criteria, including volume of traffic and pedestrian use, are looked at to decide if a signal is warranted.

KDOT has done three traffic studies in five years at the intersection, the last one completed in May of 1998, but found a traffic signal was not needed.

But since that time, development has increased along U.S. Highway 56 at a rapid pace, including the recent addition of Santa Fe Market and McDonald's at the corner of the intersection.

Paine said if KDOT does find a traffic signal is warranted, it will take time to get one in place.

"It will probably be summer before they actually did construction," he said.

If KDOT decides a signal is not warranted, Paine said the issue could go to the Baldwin City Council.

"The council will have the decision then on whether they want to have a light installed," he said. "Then it's just coming up with the money for it."

If the city decides to install the signal, he said it could cost anywhere upward of $150,000, depending on the type of the signal.

But Paine said all the city can do now is wait.

"We'll continue to ask and keep following up on it, which we will do," he said, "but timing on it is one of the things we don't control."

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