URBANA — City officials want to put traffic lights at Windsor Road and Race Street, and they'll ask the city council this week if they should move forward with the $205,000 project.
The installation would be part of the much larger Windsor Road improvement project, which includes a full rebuild of the road from Race Street to Philo Road. The project is expected to cost in excess of $5 million, and it is expected to kick off this summer with a $2.5 million state grant in hand.
The Urbana City Council will talk about adding traffic signals to the Race and Windsor intersection when it meets as the committee of the whole at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Urbana City Building, 400 S. Vine St.
Public Works Director Bill Gray said last week that the intersection is not in urgent need of traffic signals, but it likely will need them eventually, and it could be cheaper to do it in conjunction with the larger road project.
The existing four-way stop is unusual for that type of roadway, a city consultant found, and it is the only major intersection along Windsor Road between Neil Street and High Cross Road that doesn't have traffic lights.
The consultant also studied crash data between 2009 and 2013 in its analysis of whether the intersection warrants traffic signals. There were very few injury-producing crashes, but a relatively high number of crashes caused by a failure to yield or improper lane usage.
City officials say both of those kinds of crashes are common with four-way stops. The consultant said traffic lights would reduce the frequency of those accidents.
Traffic signals, city officials say, would also allow for more "green time" based on traffic demand and allow for more orderly movement of traffic through the intersection.