By Jeff Gallatin
City officials expect to give the green light by early December to operating the traffic light and railroad signals at the Bradley-Naigle roads intersection and railroad crossing.
Officials said the last of the three most recent tests went well Nov. 14, meaning after all the parties involved in the intersection approve the move, the intersection can be reopened as normal. A signalization problem with the crossing signals by the railroad tracks has hampered the intersection for several months. The area has had flashing lights, warning signs and traffic issues, which has had many motorists fuming while city employees, their engineers and CSX railroad staff have all worked on solving the problem.
Citing safety concerns about vehicles and trains crossing through the intersection, Mayor Debbie Sutherland did not want the signals fully utilized until all the problems were worked out. Prior to the three most recent November tests, timing problems hampered efforts at solving the issues, officials said.
“The last test went well,” Bay Village Service Director Dan Galli said. “Now, we have to start the approval part of the process.”
Galli said the city and railroad officials have to begin an eight to 10 notification period for the public.
“We hope to have everything up and running by the first week of December,” he said.
Sutherland said she is glad the problems have finally been solved.
“Well, we’re glad the issues are apparently worked out,” Sutherland said. “It’s not as soon as we’d hoped for, but the bottom line is, they’ve apparently got the problems worked out and we can get that area back to running normally for all the traffic that goes through there.”
Bay Village and Westlake had teamed up to obtain state funding to upgrade the well-traveled roadway and intersection. Sutherland noted the signal problems had slowed full utilization of the upgrades provided by the project.
“It was frustrating,” she said. “It was a major project designed to make an important roadway better, and we weren’t able to really say it was complete until this problem was taken care of. We didn’t want to have any safety issues for people crossing those railroad tracks, particularly at an intersection as well-traveled as that one.”
Galli noted that after the two tests on Nov. 7 and 8, officials were optimistic the timing problems had been solved.
“They checked it electronically and with trains going through, and everything was working out,” he said. “But after all the issues in recent months, they really wanted to make sure everything was working properly.”
Galli said CSX railroad workers had tried different ways of getting the problems solved, saying the issues centered on making sure the timing worked properly.
With the issues apparently dealt with, Sutherland said the city will be restarting the notification period alerting motorists that the intersection is going to change and the traffic light is going to be on.
“It’s mandatory that we do that, to make sure that the motorists traveling through the area are aware that the change is coming,” she said. “Once we start that time period, we’ll able to open it within a month.”
Sutherland said she, other officials and certainly motorists will be ready to make the change.
“It can’t come soon enough for most of us,” she said. “This has been very frustrating for a lot of people.”