Welcome to You Asked...Patch Answers where we answer readers questions. We recently received questions about the intersection at Main and Franklin Streets. Patch readers want to find out more about the intersection and when it will be fixed to prevent accidents. Here's your answer.
There is a temporary fix planned for the point where Main and Franklin Streets meet, and a long term plan is also in the works for the dangerous intersection.
Just last year, there were 19 accidents at the intersection of Main and Franklin Streets, according to a crash report from the police department. Franklin Street resident Frederick Van Magness Sr. decided to do something about the problem and organized a group of residents to present the issue to the Board of Selectmen. The selectmen connected Van Magness with State Engineer Jeff Gomes, as Main Street is a state road, and he has been working with the state ever since to find a resolution.
Van Magness has had help from other residents, Town Engineer George Zambouras, Town Administrator Bob LeLacheur and State Representative Brad Jones, he said.
"Representative Brad Jones has been personally invested and involved in this," Van Magness told Patch.
According to Van Magness, the short term plan for fixing the intersection involves the following:
- Reconfiguring the north and southbound Main Street lanes so that the left turn lanes are exclusive and offset a little to be somewhat opposing each other.
- Once you are in the left turn lane, that is the only action you can take. You must turn left. These left turn lanes will be fully protected, meaning that the through north and south traffic on the outside lanes will be fully stopped. So when you get a left turn arrow, no cars will be coming towards you.
"It’s going to solve the accident problem,” Van Magness said.
As soon as funding is approved, work can begin. Van Magness expects that this will happen in the fall.
As for the long term fixes, those will take longer to secure funding and could be years off.
“Long term we are looking at grading, drainage, sight
distance, sidewalks, widening and moving utility poles as possible
improvements. I have also already
started this process which takes a great deal longer to get additional funding,”
Gomes said in an email.