MARIETTA - Traffic and pedestrian safety issues at the intersection of Pike, Greene and Seventh streets continued to be discussed Thursday by Marietta City Council's Streets and Transportation Committee.
A project there would remove existing traffic signals at north Seventh and Greene streets and the plans do not include a traffic signal at Pike Street and Hardwood Drive and Greene Street and Hardwood Drive, Councilman Harley Noland said.
"I'm most concerned that this will result in four unsignalized turns that will increase the chance for accidents in the area," he said. "We're trying to decrease accidents, but this scenario has unsignalized turns, so I think we're creating something with the potential for more severe traffic accidents."
Councilman Tom Vukovic agreed, saying drivers at Pike Street and Hardwood Drive who want to turn north on Ohio 7 (Pike Street) could have to cross four lanes of traffic to do so.
"And anyone trying to make that left turn will have to wait a long time to get out into traffic," he said.
Thursday's discussion followed a special meeting of the committee held Wednesday evening at Washington State Community College to update residents and get comments gain on the proposed $3.2 million project.
* A questionnaire and comment form can be downloaded from the www.pikegreene7th.com.
* Forms are also available through the Marietta City Engineer's, 304 Putnam St.
* Deadline for comments is Dec. 31.
* For more information visit the engineering department link at www.mariettaoh.net or call (740) 373-5495.
The proposed preliminary design alternative supported by the engineering department would include dual left turn lanes for northbound traffic from Ohio 7 onto north Seventh Street and dual left turn lanes from north Seventh Street onto Ohio 7 north.
The existing left turn from north Seventh Street onto Greene Street at Speedway would be eliminated in favor of a right-turn only onto Greene from Seventh and a right-turn only onto Seventh Street from Greene.
A signal-protected left turn lane would also be provided for southbound traffic on Ohio 7 to turn onto south Seventh Street. A pedestrian island would also be installed at that location.
Other improvements include the installation of Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant signalized pedestrian crosswalks and curb ramps across Ohio 7 as well as across Greene and north Seventh streets.
In addition, the alley along Hardwood Center Drive and old Pike Street, just east of the intersection, would be improved to a two-lane corridor between Greene and Ohio 7 to provide access to businesses located in that area.
Eric Lambert, city project engineer, told the committee that the engineering department would continue to accept comments from residents who attended Wednesday's meeting and other public comments submitted by the Dec. 31 deadline.
Lambert also said he would try to get answers for the concerns expressed by Vukovic and Noland during Thursday's committee meeting.
Committee Chairman Denver Abicht said council would also like to review the public comments once they're submitted and compiled by the engineering department.
"The comments will be forwarded to (the Ohio Department of Transportation), and we'll see what solutions they come up with before we make a final decision on whether to move forward with this project," he said.