Traffic light a go for busy intersection

Construction seems to be a ubiquitous presence on Utah’s roads, and the U is no exception, as plans for a new traffic light on campus are nearly complete.

Designs for the new stoplight at the intersection of North Campus Drive and Wasatch Drive will be finished at the end of this month, according to Utah Department of Transportation Traffic Operations Engineer Mack Christensen.

“We have been working with the university to acquire the right of way and go through with the design,” Christensen said.

Because UDOT is performing the construction, the light will be funded by the state.

Construction is planned to begin on Sept. 1 and end in the middle of October. UDOT hopes the traffic light will help regulate the growth of traffic on North Campus Drive.

“I agree there’s heavy volume,” said U Police Detective Troy Martinez. “There are people going up there to bypass the TRAX area. You’ve got the hospitals [and the] Moran Eye Center, so it’s a busy area.”

Ralph Moffat, a campus shuttle driver for the last two years, is in favor of the new light. “That’s a very treacherous corner,” he said.

According to campus police records, there have been two accidents at that intersection in the last year.

Martinez believes the new light will help decrease the danger on North Campus Drive and Wasatch Drive, especially for pedestrians. “Traffic lights help people to cross. With traffic volume going up, it makes it hard to cross at these roads,” he said.

Though no closures are in mind, “we’ll be shifting traffic from one side to the other” during construction, Christensen said. “There will be some traffic impact, though, since we’ll be funneling traffic.”

Amanda Baird, a senior at the U, is no stranger to construction. She has been commuting from her home in Kamas all summer.

“I was in construction earlier today,” said Baird. “It’s always a pain because you have to plan [for] 15 extra minutes, but [the new light] will be good for the future.”

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