Officals consider traffic light at highway, gravel road intersectionStark County Chairman Duane “Bucky” Wolf signed a letter Friday supporting the installation of a traffic signal on Highway 22 at an intersection with a gravel road.
Stark County Chairman Duane “Bucky” Wolf signed a letter Friday supporting the installation of a traffic signal on Highway 22 at an intersection with a gravel road.
The letter is addressed to the North Dakota Department of Transportation and is an effort to relieve truck traffic issues where the highway intersects 40th Street Southwest north of Dickinson, he said.
“It’s become a serious and potential traffic hazard at that particular intersection,” Wolf said.
The issue was brought up by Tracy Tooz of Tooz Construction to commissioners at a meeting Tuesday.
“There are a countless number of people that end up in the ditch,” he said at the meeting. “There’s a tremendous amount of traffic there and I’d just hate to see one of my staff killed or injured. It’s a mess.”
He expects traffic to only get worse and at the very least would like to see a street light installed at the intersection.
“We need to light that intersection at the very minimum with street lights so we can see cross traffic,” he said. “From 4 in the morning until about 8:30 in the morning, it’s just a cluster.”
Larry Gangl, NDDOT Dickinson district engineer said a formal request for lighting at the intersection is being researched.
“Hopefully in the next week or two we should be able to see if that’s warranted or not,” Gangl said.
However, whether a traffic signal is warranted has not been studied, he added.
NDDOT is compiling information from traffic counts taken this summer, Gangl said.
“What we’re trying to do is we’re trying to gather data, so we can determine what we need to do in the future,” he said. “That’s really the starting point for future projects is to gather that data.”
The study concentrated on the portion of the highway from Dickinson north to the junction of Highway 23, Gangl said.
“We looked at that whole corridor because that’s kind of where a lot of the oil activity is right now,” he said.
Although the latest counts have not been released, Gangl said traffic on that section averaged 1,869 vehicles daily in 2009.
“The growth from 2006 to 2009 would be 73 percent,” he said. “Around towns the traffic is going to be a lot higher.”
Wolf supports putting up a street light at the intersection as well and also wants to look into funding options for paving 40th Street Southwest.
City officials are also awaiting results of the traffic counts to determine how a new traffic signal will affect Dickinson.
“If they would put a traffic signal light there on (Highway) 22, it would affect the flow of traffic coming in and out of Dickinson,” said Bill Fahlsing, city public information officer. “We wouldn’t know the affects on the city until the state completes that traffic study.”