Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Traffic Study to Shed Light in Summer Sands

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Traffic Study to Shed Light in Summer Sands

Article excerpt

********** CORRECTION July 1, 2000

Due to a reporter's error, Tim Fisher's name was misspelled in a front-page story in Wednesday's Shorelines.

***************

Tom Fisher waits at Atlantic and Brant boulevards 20 to 30 times a day. Sometimes for as long as 10 minutes.

Cars get backed up along Atlantic Boulevard. It's tough to get in or out of the Summer Sands subdivision or the two shopping plazas nearby.

Dozens of drivers make illegal U-turns. That blocks other drivers' views of the intersection.

"It's pretty much a mess," said Fisher, who owns a business in one of the plazas.

The mess led residents, business owners and Beaches officials to band together to convince transportation officials to study if a traffic light should be installed.

About 365 people who live or work near Atlantic and Brant signed a petition supporting a light.

The Neptune Beach City Council adopted a resolution last month in support of a light. The Atlantic Beach City Commission approved a resolution this month asking the Florida Department of Transportation for a traffic study.

DOT officials have agreed to conduct the study, which will take about 90 days, said Richard Coffman, an engineer in Jacksonville's DOT office.

Officials will study crash data and traffic counts and conduct a "delay study" to measure how long people wait at the intersection and how much a light would increase their wait, Coffman said.

Atlantic Beach commuter Linda Wiley said she could deal with the delay if the light makes the intersection safer.

"The benefit has to outweigh the delay and ramifications of the light," Coffman said.

One ramification could be more crashes at the intersection from people having to stop soon after crossing the Intracoastal Waterway bridge.

But traffic already stops there.

"We don't think that's justification for not having a traffic light," Aston said. …

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