More traffic flow upgrades eyed in Yukon business district

Contractor sought to replace Garth Brooks Blvd. traffic signal detectors

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Yukon City Manager Tammy Kretchmar

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

More upgrades to further improve traffic flow along a busy Yukon business district are on the horizon.

The Yukon City Council, at its May 18th meeting, authorized city engineering firm TEIM Design to seek bids to replace traffic signal detector equipment on Garth Brooks Boulevard at five intersections between NW 10th and Vandament.

The City of Yukon wants to replace signal loop detectors with the “Smart Grid” camera system.

“This is the last step for Garth Brooks Boulevard improvements,” Yukon City Manager Tammy Kretchmar said.

City of Yukon contractors recently finished two projects – installation of new right-turns onto Interstate 40 and new traffic signal controllers. Both were designed to reduce vehicle back-ups along the high-traffic commercial corridor.

The second part of proposed traffic signal improvements will further improve vehicle flow, city officials said.

“Traffic is moving well … and it will be ever better,” Kretchmar predicted.

The current traffic signals use loop detection technology – a wire imbedded in the road surface – to “see” vehicles passing through an intersection. When a vehicle drives over the loop, it acts as a sensor to trigger the signals.

But several of the loops along Garth Brooks Boulevard are broken.

Loops sometimes break due to snow and ice and when roads are milled and overlayed, according to city engineer Robbie Williams.

So instead of replacing loops, Yukon city officials are looking to install new cameras.

“The new technology is video,” Williams said at a previous council meeting. “You just put a camera, and it sees the cars, knows which lane it’s in, and tells the controller.”

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11TH STREET IMPROVEMENTS

Meanwhile, the City of Yukon is seeking bids for a project along two sections of 11th Street between Main Street (SH-66) and Wilshire.

These proposed roadway improvements are from Main Street to the Union Pacific railroad tracks and north of the North Canadian River bridge approach to Wilshire Boulevard.

A city contractor previous resurfaced 11th Street between the railroad tracks and river bridge.

Qualified bids for the Garth Brooks Boulevard and 11th Street projects must be submitted by 2 p.m. Tuesday, June 15 at Yukon City Hall, 500 W Main. Bids will be opened at 3 p.m. June 15 at the Centennial Building, 12 S 5th.

Companies interested in either project are required to attend a pre-bid conference at 3 p.m. Thursday, June 3 at the Centennial Building.

NW 10TH STREET STRIPING

To the delight of motorists, new street striping was being installed this week along NW 10th west of Cornwell.

The City of Yukon is replacing the striping from Marketplace Drive to Shedeck Parkway.

Charlie’s Car Wash, on the southwest corner of Cornwell and N.W. 10th, is helping re-stripe the road surface from Marketplace Drive to Cornwell.

Much of the street striping had been damaged or removed altogether along this well-traveled section of 10th Street, which is the City of Yukon’s south boundary.

Wintry, icy weather were partially to blame, officials said.

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THIS AND THAT …

Among other items approved at the May 18th Yukon City Council meeting were:

  • Assignment of the Yukon Municipal Authority rights to a billboard lease with Williams Family Investments LLC and sale to Elite Media Group LLC DBA Lindmark Outdoor Media, in exchange for $50,000 and advertising space. Some years ago, the City of Yukon leased land for a billboard at I-40 and Gregory Road, but the signs were never built. City officials recently decided to sell the lease. “We’ll be clear of it,” Assistant City Manager Mitchell Hort said.
  • Final replat of the Yukon Angle at 1010 Garth Brooks Boulevard. Rod Baker of Westmark Investors, which is redeveloping the former auto dealership property, said the applicant is “splitting” one lot into two. Baker told council members the applicant is closing on the sale of the Garth Brooks Boulevard-Vandament corner to a “national coffee group.” Westmark Investors had a customer for property fronting Vandament but they “backed out of the contract,” Baker noted.