Stretch of Oklahoma City Boulevard causing headaches for drivers

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OKLAHOMA CITY – A stretch of Oklahoma City Boulevard is causing a headache for drivers.

“When the light turned green, where do I go and how do I proceed through it?” said Tom Kilpatrick.

Two intersections that have only been fully accessible for a month now are causing confusion among drivers in the area.

Officials say the intersection at Klein Ave. has recorded 11 wrecks so far, and four others were recorded on other parts of the roadway since it opened.

Reports show two of those wrecks resulted in injuries.

“The fact that accidents are happening at the Klein and Boulevard intersection is concerning to us,” said Oklahoma Department of Transportation spokesperson Brenda Perry.

However, ODOT says it’s still a work in progress.

“Klein, south of the Boulevard, will eventually become a two-way street. The striping will be updated as part of this project,” said Perry.

Other issues are happening just a few hundred feet away, where the Boulevard meets Reno.

Drivers there are not able to make any left turns.

Kilpatrick took video at the intersection and says he could see person after person continuing to turn left regardless.

“It’s very clear that you can’t turn left, but people see a left turn that would be logical to make and you look around at the intersection and the intersection seems clear, so why not take it?” said Kilpatrick.

ODOT says there’s a reason for the design.

“During the design phases, studies indicated that the left turns would significantly back up traffic because of the traffic volumes there,” said Perry. “When people are making left turns there, through traffic does have to stop, so that is why left turns are restricted there. We do have nearby Walker Ave. that is a designated route that people can use and make left turns.”

Kilpatrick says he also cycles around the city regularly, and worries about pedestrian safety.

“The thought of riding a bicycle even with a large group of cyclists through this intersection, especially at night, is harrowing. I certainly wouldn’t do it,” he said.

ODOT stresses there is still more construction ahead.

“More than anything, we want people to realize that Oklahoma City Blvd. is still under construction. It’s been under construction for some time, but once traffic is driving on it, people may think, ‘Oh, it’s completely in its final stages,’” said Perry. “We are working on streetlights along the Boulevard. We are also still working on the Walker traffic signal. We are working with the city closely on that to get power to that signal.”

Officials remind everyone to be extra cautious, especially with the events happening this weekend.

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