New traffic signals on Madison Street give emergency a green light
By Rick Yencer
MUNCIE, IN - The months it takes to install new traffic signals that will yield to ambulances and other public safety traffic along Madison Street should be done this fall.
And that's when a handful of other bridge and highway projects should be finished that have been running behind this summer should be finished too.
Mayor Dennis Tyler met with members of the South Muncie Redevelopment group this week and provided an update of the traffic project that has been the source of criticism because intersections have been torn up since March with little evidence of work in recent weeks.
American Structurepoint of South Bend and their representatives gave an update on work and improvements involved, including ramps that comply with the Americans with Disability Act.
Consultant Mike Rost, a former Muncie Sanitary District official, and retired AT&T executive, said work should go quickly with installation of new poles, signals and control devices besides in street detectors to allow traffic to change the signals. And the control devices allow for emergency crews to change the signals to reduce response time for police, fire and ambulance runs.
The intersections on Madison between Wysor and 18th streets had to be torn up together because doing the work old intersection at a time would be more costly.
And there's the time to install electrical equipment that will operate the signals besides coordinating the work with utility crews.
When finished, the signals and intersection will look like those at 26th and 29th streets intersections with Madison.
Tyler said south Muncie residents also could expect other improvements, like repaving Memorial Drive, a roundabout at Madison and Walnut streets and event banners like are seen on McGalliard Road and downtown Muncie.
Muncie's Board of Public Works and Safety just awarded a $155,000 contract to E&B Paving to resurface the intersection of 26th Street and Macedonia Avenue where Southside High School is located and a portion of Memorial from White River to Burlington Drive.
Look for some other work on Memorial later this year as Tyler, a Southside graduate, is committed to improving neighborhoods and infrastructure in what he calls some long neglected areas of the community.
There also was a recent update on replacing the Jackson Street Bridge near downtown Muncie that is behind schedule. That work should be done by labor day although the last deck section is still being built. That is one of nine bridges that cross the river in Muncie and the oldest.
That two year project to widen a portion of Ind. 32 in Yorktown also should be done by November. The drawn out project was delayed by right of way and the amount of demolition along the route. There;s still no word on when the Tiger Drive-Adaline Street intersection will be closed.