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Archive for Friday, July 3, 1992

STOP SIGNS INSTALLED PREMATURELY

July 3, 1992

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The debut Thursday of stop signs on Kasold Drive at Trail Road was a brief one.

City crews installed the new stop signs about 11 a.m. Thursday. But the crews yanked the signs from their poles about three hours later.

Not only was the debut brief, it also was premature.

As George Williams, the city's public works director, said, "We goofed."

The signs were put up illegally, and when city workers realized the mistake, the signs were taken down.

On June 23, the Lawrence City Commission gave initial approval to an ordinance authorizing stop signs on Kasold at Trail, making the intersection a four-way stop. Final approval of the ordinance won't come until next Tuesday, however. And the ordinance must be listed in the legal publications of the Journal-World before the stop signs can be re-installed.

Ray Hummert, city clerk and administrative services director, said the earliest the city could legally put the signs back up is July 13.

Williams said he thought the signs were put up in error because city commissioners didn't meet this week. If they had, the ordinance would have been acted on.

"I think the non-meeting last Tuesday is what screwed everybody up,'' Williams said.

The stop signs certainly created a lot of confusion for drivers in the area, according to Diannia Affalter, who lives near the intersection and pushed for the city to install the stop signs out of concern for neighborhood children.

She said that many motorists were surprised to see the stop signs if they saw they at all. Some didn't stop, while others had to slam on their brakes to avoid running the signs, she said.

City Manager Mike Wildgen said that one man called city hall on Thursday about the signs. Police had written the man a ticket for running a stop sign, but when the man drove back through the intersection later, the signs were down.

"He was very civil with me,'' Wildgen said, ``but I can see he had inappropriately gotten a ticket. It wasn't a legal ticket.''

Wildgen said city workers "just got out in front of ourselves. . . . You try to be efficient and, in this case, we were a little too efficient."

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