Driving on Washington Street in Downtown Bloomington might be a little different if the city council approves a proposal to change the lane configuration. Public Works Director Jim Karch says they want to have one lane going each direction, as well as a bi-directional turn lane. Currently, Washington has two lanes going each direction and no turn lanes. Karch says the proposal is in response to safety concerns.
"There was a fatal accident that occurred in June of 2012 that took the life of a young lady," he says. "Based upon that, we really wanted to look deeper into this area to see if there's any way we can improve safety."
Karch says the changes also address narrow street and parking lanes. He says currently some traffic is forced to weave around parked vehicles. Karch says a smaller number of lanes won't affect traffic or the surrounding side streets.
He also says there won't be any construction barriers. Instead of tearing up the roads, he says they are using a pavement preservation technique to put an overlay on the street. There will be an informational meeting for the public on August 6. If the proposal passes the City Council, Karch says they will implement the changes by the fall.
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