Officials Seek Additional Solutions to Downtown Truck Traffic Problem

Getting those big tractor trailer trucks off Main Street in Elkton was a concern of the Mayor and Commissioners at the last meeting. After the streetscape was completed, the narrower turns and traffic-way down an old pike that pre-dates the automobile age by centuries, created problems for larger trucks when they take this roadway. Especially because of the limited turn radius, some of them collide with fire hydrants or signs, but the lucky ones just need police assistance backing out of intersections.  A number of solution sets, such as signage routing drivers to other highways, have been tried, but according to the Main Street Manager, Commissioner Jablonski, a significant problem remains. She cited several recent incidents where commercial trucks have created problems in the central business district.

Since the problem remains, the Mayor, after hearing about a study of a similar nature done for the City of Wilmington, asked the planners at Wilmapco to do a professional examination, in order to identify additional strategies to reduce truck movements in the central business district. The undertaking has started and a Wilmapco planner was present to outline what has been done so far and how the investigation will proceed. They’ve interviewed stakeholders, discussed the research questions, and evaluated the appropriate composition for the study committee, so far. Soon they will start data collection and analysis in order to identify data-driven solution opportunities for the town’s leadership.

A couple of the elected officials and members of the public, what some officials call “the peanut gallery,” wondered what the price would be to route those big rigs around Main Street. That line of questions took two tracks. The most direct one specifically concerned the financial burden to taxpayers. On the point, it was noted that town taxpayers aren’t paying for the study, which caused the usual exchange with the “gallery” about we’re paying for it through our taxes at some level of government. The other concerned the impact on the downtown economy. What about what about local deliveries? The attempt to eliminate traffic had already hurt some businesses. Should downtown “Elkton boom again” what are we doing to do then when we want trucks making deliveries? What about the trucks at Air Products? These were all questions the committee will consider as it begins this data-driven study, they were informed.


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