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Council wants traffic light on 248

Published October 23. 2013 05:00PM

A Parryville businessman asked Parryville Council on Tuesday night to consider asking Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for a traffic light on Route 248 and Centre Street to prevent future accidents at the intersection.

Vincent O'Leary, owner of Emerald Hollow Campground Inc., said that his greatest concern about the intersection is that one day a crash will involve a school bus.

O'Leary noted that there were two bad crashes at the intersection in the past six months, with one resulting in a fatality in the vicinity of Riverwalck Saloon.

"Can you have PennDOT do a traffic study?" O'Leary asked.

Mike Grant, council president answered, "A traffic study is not for us to decide."

O'Leary said, "The local jurisdiction has a lot of consideration. I'm asking you to consider sending a letter to PennDOT. I think a light will help. It's going to get a lot worse."

O'Leary said that a traffic light will not cost the borough anything.

"I'm just thinking that a school bus accident would be a disaster," he said.

Ron Zuber, who is a resident of Parryville, and is also a borough worker, agreed that council should consider asking PennDOT to perform a traffic study.

"The traffic on 248 travels at a high speed," he said.

Grant said that in the past PennDOT has performed a traffic study and the report noted that a traffic light was not warranted at that time.

"A lot has changed since then," said Grant.

O'Leary said that borough council should consider asking for the study in light of the recent fatality.

"More time will pass and we'll see a resident involved in a fatality," said O"Leary.

Council members agreed to send a letter to PennDOT requesting a traffic study.

Ron Young, spokesman for PennDOT, said that for PennDOT to perform a traffic study the borough must put in writing that it will commit to paying costs to install and maintain the light.

"If the traffic signal is warranted, the costs range from $100,000 to $300,000," said Young. Young said that state and federal dollars are used only when there is a large scale improvement to reconstruct the intersection, other wise the municipality is on it's own.

"We require the municipality to make a financial commitment if the study shows a signal is warranted," said Young.

"If the municipality does not move forward after the signal is warranted, we hold the municipality liable.

"The municipality will be responsible for obtaining the plans approved and obtaining a permit," said Young. "The permittee is responsible for purchasing, erecting and maintaining the signal," said Young.

Young noted that a crash history is part of the study.

Young said that once a municipality makes a request and agrees to be financial responsible, a traffic study could be performed within several weeks, depending on the traffic study unit's work load.

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