GRANTS PASS, Ore. -- Each year, 30 car crashes happen on the intersection of NE A Street and NE Beacon Drive, according to the Grants Pass Public Works Department. To make the area more safe for drivers and pedestrians, Grants Pass is making the intersection a four way stop.The stop signs will be installed on Oct. 8.
The intersection already has two stop signs. The City of Grants Pass will be adding two more on NE A Street to make it a four way stop. An intersection needs certain qualifications to become a four way stop. The amount of traffic has to be equal on both streets.
The City of Grants Pass said there used to be more traffic on NE A Street. In the past couple of years, more stores have been built on Beacon Drive. Now, the traffic on both streets are more equal. The Grants Pass Public Works Department said this new four way stop will be 75 percent more safe than the existing two way stop.
"Slowing traffic down so that people actually have to stop and make eye contact with the next driver before they go, that saves a lot of accidents," said Wade Elliott, the Grants Pass Assistant Public Works Director. "The lower traffic speeds are a big factor as well. So, if we can slow vehicles down, then injuries resulting from crashes go down a lot."
Neighbors said they wanted this intersection to be a four way stop for years. Gail Church has been living right by the intersection for more than 20 years. The intersection is sandwiched in between a residential area. Neighbors said school buses and pedestrians often pass through the intersection.
Church said that she's seen crashes at the intersection because her home security camera recorded them.
"We don't want to see people get hurt," said Church. "There's kids in the neighborhood and they walk down the streets. We're so afraid somebody's going to get hit. I'm actually afraid they're going to crash into my bedroom, which is over here, someday. It's really scary."
This new project would also add another cross walk on the intersection.
Some neighbors said that they're a little worried the four way stop will cause more noise. But a majority said that making the area more safe is worth it.
Transportation system plan
The City of Grants Pass wants to hear from people who regularly drive on the city's streets. That's because they're planning the next 20 years of transportation updates.
You can find information about the Grants Pass Transportation System Plan here. This link includes the city's existing plans to update roads. People can also leave comments and suggest roads or intersections they want the city to work on.
The Grants Pass Public Works Department said that they will evaluate the suggestions and decide if they should be added to the plan. The online open house will be available until the end of October.