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Some relief for traffic traveling along Main Street at Spartan Drive may soon be coming.
Mike Sanders with the Missouri Department of Transportation said Monday that video sequence equipment for the intersection has been purchased by the owners of the new Sonic on the northeast corner of the intersection.
In order to get approval for the site, Sonic’s owners were mandated by MoDOT to install the new signal enhancements. Sanders said MoDOT crews would perform the installation.
Sanders said video cameras would collect information when cars begin to stack up, and send a signal for the light to change. Sanders said he thinks the system will work.
“It will clear out the intersection based on the traffic pattern rather than a timed sequence,” Sanders said. “It’s a pretty high dollar system that will deal with real world situations. One lane of traffic backing up will get the green light.”
Sanders said Sonic owners were also directed by MoDOT to move its only entrance and exit to the restaurant further back on Main Street than what they originally planned.
Sanders said MoDOT encouraged Sonic’s owners to obtain the next adjacent house on Main Street in order to move it even further back. He said MoDOT also encouraged the owners to purchase the house north of Sonic’s location on Spartan Drive for access to North Main Street.
Sanders ruled out the possibility of widening the intersection to allow for a turning lane. Sometimes a car trying to turn left can block other cars. He said the intersection is not ideal for the development.
“Basically, when we try to retrofit these redevelopment plans we don’t have a blank sheet of paper,” he said. “We have the conditions of a real world site and all we could do is make them upgrade the signals. We’re stuck with making them move back as far as their frontage will allow.”
Additionally, Sanders said this summer BP gas station will also close an entrance to its store on Spartan Drive. Sanders said he believes that will also help traffic flow at the intersection.