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Warren considers changes to intersections

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05/15/2008

By Kara Herlihy

The Warren Select Board discussed a village entrance design proposal from the Agency of Transportation (AOT) along with proposed changes to several intersections at a public hearing held Tuesday, May 13. 

While no representatives from the Agency of Transportation were present at the hearing, their plans showed a proposed change to the entrance of Warren Village from Route 100. Presently, the intersection is marked with several state-mandated reflector posts.

The proposal calls for the removal of the posts and the implementation of a "T" intersection, in order to improve safety and reduce the number of accidents, according to the AOT.

NINETEEN ACCIDENTS


Town administrator Cindi Hartshorn-Jones said that in recent years, there have been approximately 19 accidents at the Warren Village entrance intersection.

Several community members and town officials expressed their concerns about the current intersection as well as their apprehension over the proposed changes.

Warren Fire Chief Chris Kathan said, "Pulling out with these lengthy trucks into the southbound lane, you can't see up the hill; its going to cause more rear-end accidents."

Select board members also discussed the intersection of Route 100 and West Hill Road, just up the road from the village entrance.

HALF THE TRAFFIC

Butch Hartshorn said, "Half the traffic that comes out of the village goes up West Hill Road. If you stack traffic like that, you're going to have more accidents."

Hartshorn suggested moving the village entrance more towards West Hill Road to prevent the stopping and starting caused by "stacked" traffic.

Select board chair Burt Bauchner said that "none of us on the select board are traffic experts; the AOT is coming for a walk through."

Select board member Kirsten Reilly said a "T" intersection "will slow traffic into the village" while members of the fire department expressed concerns over the maneuverability of large trucks and their ability to swing the turn in and out of the village.

BAD INTERSECTIONS

Butch Hartshorn added, "There are more ways to control traffic than to make bad intersections."

The board also discussed the intersection of West Hill Road at Golf Course Road, and West Hill Road at West Hill Extensions and Inferno Road. "T" intersections were also discussed as options for the aforementioned intersections as well as more signage and increased visibility.

The board said that their next meeting, scheduled in two weeks, will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a site visit to those intersections.

Cindi Hartshorn Jones assured that the AOT's evaluation of problem intersections comes at zero cost to the town. The engineers from the AOT will be present at the site visit.

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