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Last updated: Sat. Mar. 10, 2012 - 01:05 am EDT

Campus turn lane in works

A new turning lane is in the future for a growing local college, helping students and commuters alike.

Q. Going north on Clinton Street, there are two areas where U-turns are forbidden – by Concordia seminary and the north entrance to Crestwood Colony. How was it possible for Harrison College to be built on Clinton – and no way for those traveling north to turn left into the college parking lot? Are there plans to fix this? – Kim Drake, Fort Wayne

A. Good news, Kim, a solution is coming that should make the area safer for all.

First, a little history. The school opened under a different name in 1999, according to Shan Gunawardena, city traffic engineer. At that time, the school had an enrollment of about 50. That number has grown to about 500 today, exacerbating the problem. He agreed that the need for a dedicated entrance into Harrison College from northbound Clinton is evident.

The good news is that a project is under way to provide a left-turn lane from Clinton into the college. It is being developed as a public-private partnership between the city and school because it will not only benefit the college but also increase safety to vehicles traveling on Clinton.

The project is expected to be constructed this spring.

Unnecessary signals

Adding a traffic signal won’t always make it easier for vehicles to access a busy thoroughfare.

Gunawardena this week briefed the City Council on a study of Coldwater Road traffic from Dupont Road to Union Chapel Road. The study was done to examine the effects of a proposed retirement center at Dupont and Candlewood Way.

While neighbors wanted a signal at this intersection to help access Coldwater, Gunawardena said that likely would not improve traffic flow. Because the signal would have to be linked to surrounding signals, it could actually delay a driver’s ability to turn left from Candlewood onto Coldwater.

This is because the Candlewood signal would be able to turn green only when it fit into the other nearby signals, so as not to overly delay traffic on Coldwater, where the vast majority of the vehicles travel.

The retirement development would add little traffic to the area, Gunawardena said. The study reported that a future traffic signal could be considered as need arises.

Instead, the city hopes to link the Mill Lake Road, Union Chapel and Dupont signals to provide better traffic flow. The council eventually approved the rezoning for the retirement center, although Councilman Russ Jehl, R-2nd, who represents the area, opposed it.

Radio Sage

This week’s audio question comes from Leon Grote, who asked about speed limits on U.S. 27. The segment originally aired Friday on WOWO and can be heard online at

Road Sage provides transportation knowledge, solves driving dilemmas and answers construction conundrums. It appears every Saturday. Email your questions to

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