Council reviews ideas to relieve traffic congestion in Hagerstown

November 18, 2008|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- Traffic relief in some parts of Hagerstown could be right around the corner.

City Engineer Rodney Tissue discussed with the Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday several proposals that would relieve rush-hour traffic congestion, primarily in the section of West Franklin Street between Potomac Street and Burhans Boulevard.

Tissue said traffic in the city increases about 2 percent every year.

"Over the years, that adds up," he said. "Our goal is to have a steady flow of traffic."

Part of the proposal that Tissue submitted to the council included partnering with the Maryland State Highway Administration to complete the following projects:

  • Widen West Franklin Street between McPherson Street and Burhans Boulevard

  • Construct a right-turn lane on West Franklin Street at Burhans Boulevard to prevent traffic from backing up

  • Optimize the timing of the signals on Burhans Boulevard at Franklin Street and at Salem Avenue

  • Restripe Burhans Boulevard between Salem Avenue and Cook Street to provide two southbound through lanes

    According to city documents, approval of Tissue's recommendations could decrease traffic by as much as 70 percent.


Tissue said the construction of a turning lane on West Franklin Street would take about two months and cost about $200,000. Costs associated with other aspects of the project would be "minimal," Tissue said.

Because Burhans Boulevard, also known as U.S. 11, is a federal roadway, the council directed Tissue to seek federal dollars to help pay for the project.

Tissue said he would bring the issue before the council for further review when more information is available.

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