Dayton residents raise objections to proposals to change intersection Two options include westbound bypass lane, a traffic roundabout

December 09, 1998|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

Saying there are no problems with the intersection of Triadelphia and Howard roads, about a dozen Dayton residents objected to two plans to change the intersection at a Howard County Public Works Board meeting last night.

The homeowners contended that, despite county Department of Public Works projections of about 2,200 cars a day on Triadelphia Road, motorists have had little trouble at the "T"-like intersection, which features a triangular median.

"I have rarely waited there for more than three seconds," said John Wildrick, who uses the intersection twice a day. "I'm not aware of any accidents there. It's a very scenic area."

But Elizabeth Calia, chief of the Division of Transportation Projects and Watershed Management in the public works agency, pointed out that a few cumbersome trees and sharply angled turn lanes make it difficult for drivers to turn at the intersection.

"If you have a T-intersection with a skewed viewing angle, it's very difficult for a driver to negotiate a skewed angle," Calia said. "What we want to do is not only reduce any accident history, but also prevent any potential accidents because Howard County is still growing."

The department is recommending that one of two options be used at the intersection. One would create a traditional T-intersection with a bypass lane on Triadelphia Road for westbound motorists. The second option is a 15-foot-wide roundabout that operates like a revolving door -- motorists would have to yield to drivers already in the lanes.

LeAnn Kniskern, a public works project manager, said the roundabout reduces speeds, but also acknowledged that at a projected cost of $200,000, the circle would cost about $50,000 more than a traditional T-intersection.

Longtime resident Steven Mullinix said the cost isn't worth it.

"If you want to spend a quarter of a million dollars, don't spend it there," he said.

Because Howard is a scenic road, last night was the first of two required hearings on the proposed changes. Calia said the next hearing would take place in the spring.

Pub Date: 12/09/98

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