JOLIET – The city will not add a sought-after stop sign at one far West Side intersection but plans traffic lights in future years along the stretch of Theodore Street.
Residents in the area of Great Ridge Drive and Theodore Street had sought a stop sign there because of accidents at the intersection.
City engineers, however, said the accident rate at the intersection was lower than two others nearby, and another had nearly as many. Adding stop signs on an arterial road like Theodore Street at intersections with residential streets could create more problems, they said.
Public Works Director James Trizna at a City Council meeting earlier this week outlined future plans for the far west stretch of Theodore Street.
In the next five years, the city hopes to install stop lights at Drauden Road, Wesmere Parkway and County Line Road.
The stretch of Theodore Street west of Route 59 now has one traffic signal at River Road. There also is a signal at Route 59.
“Our plan is to make this all a signalized corridor,” Trizna said Thursday. “This is a major arterial street. You don’t want to intersperse stop signs with traffic signals.”
Trizna later said the timeline for future traffic signals could be three to five years but added it was a preliminary estimate and depended on available funding for the projects. The first traffic signals likely would go at Wesmere Parkway and Drauden Road, he said. A stop light at County Line Road would follow.
In the meantime, the city does plan to add speed limit and warning signs in an attempt to avert accidents at Great Ridge Drive. The stop signs would be bigger than the ones in the area now, and there would be more of them. The warning signs would caution drivers that an intersection is coming up.
Trizna said those signs could begin going up in three to four weeks.