The in basket: Three readers have complained about non-responsive stop lights in Bremerton that stay red while drivers sit there.
Ron Canfield asks, “What’s the deal with the light at the intersection of 11th Street and Pacific Avenue? When heading east on 11th, the light to turn left (north) onto Pacific engages even when there are no cars turning left, which is the case most of the time. The light stays green long enough for about 40 cars to make the light, causing vehicles heading west on 11th to sit at a light for no reason.”
On at least two occasions, he said, he has turned right and worked his way back onto 11th, and saw in his mirror that the left turn light back at Pacific was still green even as he passed through the light at Warren and even when he got up to Chester Avenue.
Mike Burton says the same thing happens at Sixth and Washington in one southbound lane of Washington.
“If there are people waiting to turn left onto Washington from 6th Street and people in the left lane of northbound Washington, the traffic headed southbound on Washington does not get picked up at all unless they are in the left lane, which most don’t use since it disappears so quickly after the intersection with 6th.
“The only time that the southbound traffic in the right lane gets a green light is when the light reverts to its “default” state, which is green for northbound and southbound Washington,” Mike said.
And back in September, Bryan, who didn’t want his last name used, said the light at Burwell and Washington wouldn’t turn green for his wee hours trip home after the swing shift at the shipyard, stalling him on Burwell for a long time while few vehicles, if any, passed by on Washington. It had changed almost instantly before, he said.
The out basket: I asked Gunnar Fridriksson of the city street engineers about Mike and Ron’s complaints, saying it sounded like the in-pavement traffic detectors, called “loops,” in the affected lanes had failed. Bryan had said by then that the problem on Burwell had been fixed in November.
“Both 11th and Pacific and 6th and Washington have broken loops, along with Wheaton and Cherry and about 10 more locations in town,” says Gunnar. “We have been adjusting timing at the signals as we have time to, but have not make it to either 11th or 6th yet.
“Spending a couple of thousand dollars for loop replacements on signals that are going to be under construction shortly would not be a good expenditure of taxpayer monies.
“The upcoming project for Pacific Avenue is this summer, which will (correct) the malfunctioning intersection at 11th. The Washington Avenue project will be correcting the signal at 6th and Washington.”
The upcoming projects are to make Washington a two-lane street and widen the sidewalks between Burwell and the Manette Bridge, and to continue the Pacific Avenue improvements done south of Sixth Street to between Sixth and 11th.