Project to reduce traffic backup now underway

Contractors hired to limit Garth Brooks Boulevard vehicle ‘stacking’

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Traffic starts to bottleneck at the Health Center Parkway/West End Pointe Drive intersection on Garth Brooks Boulevard. A City of Yukon contractor recently started a $202,475 project to improve vehicle flow by interconnecting traffic signals and upgrading technology at eight Garth Brooks Boulevard intersections between Vandament and N.W. 10th. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer

A project designed to reduce traffic “backups” is underway along a busy Yukon commercial corridor.

The City of Yukon has contracted with Traffic Engineering Consultants and SignalTek, Inc. to coordinate and interconnect traffic control signal devices on Garth Brooks Boulevard from Vandament to N.W. 10th.

Yukon Development Services Director Mitchell Hort talked about much-needed improvements to these busy intersections during the Nov. 9th Yukon Planning Commission meeting.

“We’re going to be getting those vehicles out a lot faster than they do currently – instead of the ‘stacking’,” Hort told commissioners. “Hopefully we’ll get progression, both north and southbound.”

The Yukon City Council recently approved the $202,475 signal project to improve traffic flow along the well-traveled route on both sides of Interstate 40.

The traffic signals are at eight Garth Brooks Boulevard intersections: N.W. 10th, Target Drive, Health Center Parkway, Interstate 40 (eastbound and westbound), Andrew Drive, Walmart Drive, and Vandament Avenue.

Flashing yellow left-turn signals will be installed and the cabinets and controllers will be updated with the latest technology.

Once the work is done, the contractors’ traffic engineers will be able to adjust the signal lights as needed during peak times with remote 24/7 monitoring using real-time data.

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‘ROLLING’ PARKING LOT

Several years ago, the City of Yukon authorized a study along Garth Brooks Boulevard that identified 13 projects that should be done over the next 25 years. This traffic signal upgrade was among them.

“We realize it becomes a problem, ‘stacking’ (vehicles) from the school and just normal use every day,” Hort explained.

For years, Yukon motorists have complained about long wait times at frequent red lights along Garth Brooks Boulevard.

“We feel like it’s best to get the traffic moving,” Hort said. “It’s been too long where (it’s been) kind of a ‘rolling parking lot’. So, we’re going to take care of that.”

At the north end of its traffic signal coordination project, Traffic Engineering Consultants recently conducted a traffic impact analysis for a proposed convenience store/gas station.

Yukon planning commissioners, at their November meeting, recommended approval of this project in the Yukon Angle development on the northwest corner of Vandament and Garth Brooks Boulevard.