Traffic signal at Old Hwy 14 & 4th St. West in Waseca to be deactivated March 20
MANKATO, Minn. – Motorists on Old Highway 14 (Elm Avenue) in Waseca will no longer need to stop at the intersection with 4th Street West after March 20. However, cross traffic on 4th Street West will need to comply with a stop sign before entering the intersection, when it is clear.
The evaluation and proposed removal of the signal is to reduce delay, improve traffic flow and reduce maintenance costs. Current and forecasted traffic at the intersection is not high enough to warrant the signal since the U.S. Highway 14 bypass was completed on the south side of Waseca.
As part of the removal of the signal, MnDOT will be installing pedestrian-activated flashing warning signs to facilitate pedestrians crossing Old Highway 14.
Statewide, through-stop control (two way stop) intersections with similar traffic volumes have shown to have less frequent and less severe crashes than comparable signalized intersections. It is believed that through-stop controlled intersections have fewer crashes because motorists are required to be attentive and actively look for a safe gap in traffic, rather than relying on a traffic signal indication that does not tell the motorists if it is safe to enter the intersection.
Replacing the signal with through-stop control will also reduce delays for both motorists and pedestrians at the intersection.
Crews from the MnDOT will deactivate the signal on March 20th and add the following signs:
- “TRAFFIC CONTROL CHANGE AHEAD” – on all intersection approaches
- “Stop Ahead” warning signs – on both 4th Street approaches
- STOP signs with flashing LED lights – on both 4th Street approaches
- “CROSS TRAFFIC DOES NOT STOP” – on both 4th Street approaches, below the stop signs
In conjunction with the signal deactivation, MnDOT will be evaluating the traffic operations of the revised intersection over the next few months. If during the evaluation no adverse traffic impacts are observed, the signal will remain deactivated until it can be removed during the upcoming reconstruction of Old Highway 14. In addition to the expected crash and delay benefits, the removal of the signal will also reduce maintenance expenses for the city of Waseca.