The traffic light in front of the former Plain City elementary school on West Main Street may be removed.
Village administrator, Kevin Vaughn, informed council Monday that the Ohio Department of Transportation has plans to remove it citing the light as being “not a warranted signal.”
“We’re working with the schools to see if there’s an improved pedestrian crossing that we can install once that signal is removed,” Vaughn said. “We’re waiting to hear that answer. We do have a meeting scheduled with ODOT in the next couple of weeks.”
The removal comes as part of ODOT’s plan to repave State Route 161 and said that due to the unwarranted nature of the light, they would not pay for the changes. News of the signal’s removal sparked concern for safety from council members since the area is still used by the schools as both a crosswalk and a bus stop.
“If we remove that signal, something will occur there,” said councilman John Rucker. Plain City police chief, Dale McKee, also expressed concern since the area is used as a designated school zone.
Vaughn said, however, that once the signal is removed, the area would no longer be a school zone.
“The traffic signal is not a warranted traffic signal so therefore it’s not a crossing and that’s what we’re working with them to see if we can install a crosswalk,” he said. “That crosswalk that’s there is actually an improper crossing, it’s mid-walk crossing because it’s within 300 feet of a corner of a street where there would be a proper crossing.”
He said both village officials and Jonathan Alder Schools superintendent Gary Chapman are working to get the issue resolved but added that ODOT is holding firm on their decision. The notion of the village maintaining the signal or partnering with the schools to keep it going came up, but no decisions have been made.
In other council news Monday:
• Uptown Plain City Organization (UPCO) board member, Bob Walters, presented the village with a check for $1,000 to be used for the Bicentennial celebration in July. Tim Sutter of Ohio Edison also presented a check for $500 to UPCO.
• The village approved the painting of a silo located at the site of the new development on Plain City-Georgesville Road. M/I Homes plans to paint the name of the development, Darby Fields, on the silo as a way to both preserve a piece of the existing property and to advertise the houses. Some safety concerns as well as sign regulations were brought up.
• Jason Shumway, owner of Tavern 161, announced that the bar and restaurant would be partnering with Actual Brewing Company in Clintonville to brew a “Bicentennial beer” for the village’s upcoming celebration.
Reach Michael Williamson at 740-852-1616, ext. 1619.
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