HELENA — The intersection of Rodney and 6th Avenue in undergoing a significant change to it’s traffic pattern as it moves from a signal light to a 4-way stop.
As of Tuesday Dec. 10, the downtown intersection is set to flashing red lights and should be treated as an all-way stop.
The change comes as a part of Phase I of the Rodney Street Reconstruction Project.
The goal of the project is to replace aging infrastructure, improve the quality of the road and make the sidewalks ADA accessible.
City Transportation Engineer Mark Young said they had originally planned to just update the signal at the intersection, but the traffic study showed it no longer met the requirements for a traffic signal.
“It’s not going to be a huge change because the signal timing was pretty short,” said Young. “So if you did have to stop and wait for the signal it was just a short wait. Now it’s just going to be stop signs so you can stop, make sure it’s clear and then go through.”
The light will flash red for a minimum of 90 days, during which another video traffic count will be conducted and compared to the previous study.
The City also did a traffic study on the Broadway and Rodney intersection which showed a higher volume than the 6th avenue intersection, but still didn’t warrant a traffic signal.
The City anticipates to remove the traffic lights in the summer of 2020. The traffic lights will then be salvaged and used to replace or repair a light when needed.