Plans moving forward to squeeze Lexington Road and add turn lane - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Plans moving forward to squeeze Lexington Road and add turn lanes

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The city of Louisville has plans to reconfigure the design for a section of Lexington Road to make it safer for the more than 10,000 drivers using it every day.

According to a traffic study, 128 accidents were recorded in the Lexington corridor from 2009 to 2013. Of those accidents, 27 included injuries. District 9 Councilman Bill Hollander said that’s part of the reason why the road needs to be reworked.

"This intersection at Lexington and Payne, we have twice as many accidents as you'd expect at an intersection that's configured this way," Hollander said.

Plans to repave Lexington Road from Payne Street to Grinstead Drive have been in the works since 2015. Hollander said that provides a good opportunity to rethink how it is laid out.

“It desperately needs paving,” Hollander said. “The question is when you pave it, should you put the stripes back the way they currently are, which we know creates an unsafe condition? Or should we change the road surface to make it safer?”

The current plan would take the four-lane road down to one lane in each direction from the intersection with Payne Street to the intersection with Grinstead Drive. Bike lanes would be added to the outside of the road. That will create space in the center of the road for designated turn lanes at Payne Street and Grinstead Drive and also in front of the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana and The Woods apartment complex.

Hollander said squeezing the road down and adding turn lanes will not slow drivers’ commutes down. Instead, he said it will make for a smoother, safer drive.

"If we can make a dedicated turning lane with appropriate signalization, we can make this intersection flow better and make it much safer," he said. “It would also help the traffic flow, because as you're coming through here, you think there's a backup of traffic. But a lot of that is people in the wrong lane, people trying to make a left turn and other having to wait behind them."

Hollander said this is not an expensive project in the grand scheme of things, because it mainly involves milling, repaving and repainting the road. Sidewalks or beautification are not part of this repaving plan.

The funds for this project were already budgeted for, so Hollander hopes it will be complete by the fall.

To see the city’s proposed plan, which includes maps and animated renderings, click here.

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