Traffic Commission rejects Yukon study on controversial intersection

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YUKON, Okla. – The four members of Yukon’s Traffic and Transportation Commission unanimously rejected a study Thursday that said a busy intersection didn’t need a traffic light after all.

The light at the intersection of Garth Brooks Blvd. and Andrews Dr. broke a couple months ago, the city clerk told NewsChannel 4 earlier this week.

City officials said they had to order a part from out of state, so they decided to do a study, which determined things flowed fine without the lights.

Currently, traffic on Garth Brooks Blvd. does not stop at that intersection, while drivers on Andrews wait at a stop sign.

“It is horrible,” one driver said, as she waited for traffic to clear. “It’s annoying. It’s a pain. I hate it. I try to avoid it as much as I can.”

Aggravated members of the community packed the city council chambers Thursday night to once again voice their opinions.

Members of the commission called the report “faulty,” questioning why it was conducted after the light had been turned off.

Others said the report was confusing because of the language used.

The advertising and marketing director of the Braum’s store that sits at the intersection said business had declined after the light had been covered, because people didn’t know if they could get back on the highway after stopping in.

“We believe the lights should be on, and we believe the area should be safe and easy to access for the residents and those who do business there,” Terry Holden told the commission. “We think that benefits the citizens and it benefits the businesses.”

After the commission had voted, other residents brought up the inconvenience of the intersection, adding it’s dangerous not only for drivers but for the people who may be walking or biking near the intersection.

Other drivers said they don’t miss the traffic light, because it improves the flow of traffic on Garth Brooks Blvd.

The commission’s decision does not put an end to this fight.  The city council could still make its own assessment if a member of council, the city manager or the city attorney decide to put it on the next agenda.

City officials couldn’t provide a timetable for when a final decision could be made, only saying a decision will likely come after other studies on the corridor as a whole are completed.

The city council meets again Oct. 6.