City to narrow Haralson intersections at Ridley and Church

Published 10:50 am Tuesday, July 2, 2024

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During its work session on Thursday, the LaGrange City Council discussed plans to narrow the intersections on Haralson Street at Ridley Avenue and Church Street due to safety concerns.

City Manager Patrick Bowie said the intersections have been modified numerous times throughout the years and used to have a traffic signal. 

“There’s been a lot of accidents out here. A traffic engineer has never really been consulted on any of the changes that were made. We just ran out there and put signs and did things, so there are some safety concerns that we want to address,” Bowie said.

Assistant City Manager Bill Bulloch said the city engaged Barge Engineering to do a traffic safety analysis on the two unsignalized intersections. He said the Church Street intersection had 13 crashes and the Ridley Avenue intersection had 11 during a three-year period.

Bulloch said that the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices for Streets and Highways, published by the Federal Highway Administration indicates that any all-way stop intersections —like the one at Ridley and Haralson— should have an engineering study to warrant the stops.

Each of these intersections meets those requirements, he said.

The current plan is to narrow the intersections with concrete “bulbs” to slow down traffic. 

“What you’re trying to do is narrow those intersections because when the road is wide people tend to speed,” Bulloch said. “It’s a traffic calming measure.”

Bulloch said the changes will eliminate a couple of parking spaces, which he noted may have violated city code anyway.

The change will allow stop signs at the intersections to be placed closer to the roadway and hopefully reduce accidents, he said.