Public Works has determined that the traffic signals at Main & Fir Streets and Main & Grape Streets should be removed, primarily due to the lack of need and age of the signal equipment. Both signals will be replaced with two-way-stop-control. Fir Street and Grape Street will have stop signs; Main Street traffic will have the right-of-way. Main Street is up for a major resurfacing including reconstruction of many curb ramps this spring followed by pavement maintenance this summer. Once the roadway surface is replaced, the street will be striped with a two-way bicycle facility, separated from moving vehicles by a lane of parallel parking. With all these changes taking place, this is a logical time to review intersection controls (i.e. traffic signals).
These traffic signals were installed by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) back when this route through downtown, known then as the Medford-Provolt Highway and later as Oregon State Highway 238, was the main route to Jacksonville. Since then, Highway 238 has been relocated off of Main Street, contributing to the context of Main Street changing from a highway to downtown street. The new two-way bicycle facility will further change the feel of Main Street by making pedestrian crossings more comfortable due to the removal of one motor vehicle travel lane.
The traffic volumes at these intersections do not warrant having a traffic signal and the aged equipment is approaching the end of its useful life. The removal of these traffic signals will help reduce delay for bicyclists, pedestrians, and motorists alike and reduce investments and maintenance costs associated with unjustified infrastructure. Following these changes, the signals on Main Street will be retimed to ensure that they are timed appropriately for the speed limit and will continue to platoon motor vehicles and provide adequate gaps in traffic for pedestrian crossing. Public Works will continue to monitor the area and evaluate for additional traffic calming measures or crosswalk enhancements, as needed.
Please contact Public Works Engineering at 541-774-2100 or [email protected] if you have any questions about these changes.