City council discusses adding 2-way streets downtown

2-way Streets Downtown.jpg

Several city streets may soon be two-way roads, as part of a traffic signal modernization project.

Part of the plan would include making 4th, 7th and East Adams two-way streets.

"A lot of people that go down the wrong way,” Springfield Public Works Director Mark Mahoney said.

“When they make turns, there [are] less turns that need to be made to get to your destination. So, there's actually a safety factor to it that's very important."

The project will be broken down into four phases, costing an estimated $20 million.

Some say the switch would be good for business, encouraging more people to go downtown.

“Downtown Springfield Incorporated, it's been one of the issues they've long talked about,” Mahoney said. “As well as some of the downtown merchants making recommendations that we move in that direction."

Some city council members said they aren’t sold on the two-way switch and think it will cause confusion for drivers.

"I want to see some engineering studies that prove that it's safer for pedestrians and that two ways will really help business downtown,” Ward 10 Alderman Ralph Hanauer said. “I'm just very skeptical about that."

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