Many of these expenses are due to the necessity of improvements required primarily for ingress to and egress from the Home Depot complex development adjacent to the northeast corner of the intersection. This project will require signals along 31st Street at Ousdahl Road and at the development's main entrance across from the post office entrance. KDOT predicts that these closely spaced signals will cause a significant bottleneck at the Iowa intersection and particularly along 31st Street to the east.
Everyone agrees that the intersection of 31st and Iowa streets needs to be improved. However, the KDOT engineers presented options for the intersection in the absence of the Home Depot project. Of these options, one included the proper alignment of all lanes on 31st Street and installation of traffic signals. The total cost of these improvements was estimated to be $350,000, with $300,000 contributed by KDOT and $50,000 from the city of Lawrence. Compare this to the total costs of the improvements currently under consideration, which are approximately $3.3 million but do not include the costs for the necessary right-turn lanes onto Iowa Street.
There are many unresolved issues in South Lawrence that will have a dramatic effect, particularly on the 31st and Iowa intersection, but also throughout our neighborhoods. As taxpayers, we urge the commission to refuse to fund the development-driven 31st and Iowa improvements until a definitive assessment is made of the city's total costs and the consequences of these improvements to traffic movement.
Coalition Neighborhood representatives