The removal of the electronic traffic and pedestrian signals from the intersection at 1st Avenue and Main Street has been a source of contention between those who feel it has minimized delays going through the downtown area and businesses and their supporters which have voiced concerns about the damage they feel it has caused businesses in the area and pedestrians and drivers who feel it has become an unsafe intersection since the change.
But at Monday’s regular meeting of the Ferndale City Council, City of Ferndale Project Manager Katy Radder presented information about an upcoming project intended to address some of the problems associated with that intersection since the signal removal.
According to Radder, they will first eliminate the north-south pedestrian crossing on the east leg of the intersection (red in the image above). Next they will install rectangular rapid flash beacons (RRFB) on light poles (yellow in the image above) at the ends of the north-south pedestrian crossing on the west leg of the intersection.
RRFB crosswalk warning systems have been installed outside the Ferndale Public Library on Main Street and near Ferndale High School on Washington Street.
Radder said in an email that the concentration of underground utilities on the south side of Main Street creates potential for conflicts when relocating the existing light poles and installing new poles for the RRFBs. So the City has reached out to Puget Sound Energy about the pole conversion. “We are working to get the details worked out,” Radder said. “There’s generally a long lead time for electrical/poles, so it will likely take 22+ weeks (approx. 6 mos) to install the ped-activated portion of the project.”
In the mean time, Radder said, they plan on moving forward with eliminating the east crosswalk. This will involve “pavement marking changes, and removing the ADA ramps and crosswalk on the east side of the intersection.”