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Friday, February 2, 2018

Traffic Changes at Busy Intersections Could Be Indefinite

The Fort Thomas Police Department has been conducting traffic studies during  the last two weeks to see whether or not allowing traffic to flow without crossing guards directing traffic.

Officer Sean Donelan reported a successful experiment last week at the intersection of Memorial Parkway and N. Fort Thomas Avenue by allowing the crossing guard to help students cross the street instead of directing traffic.

This week, he was on-hand to see if those results were also successful at the intersection of Highland Avenue and Fort Thomas Avenue.

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He said that the data suggests the experiment has been successful in the morning, but concedes the need for afternoon traffic direction.

"The numbers of tardy students has gone down significantly, but more importantly the traffic flow is clearing quicker," he said.

He conceded that the backups are longer on S. Fort Thomas Highland Avenues, but the Highland intersection is clearing quicker and there are no backups on N. First Thomas Avenue.

"Simply put, it is safer to have that congestion on S. Fort Thomas and Highland Avenues, than it is to have it in the central business district or near the school.  It is also safer for Judy (Kiskadin), who also concedes that the intersection is clearing quicker.  The reduction in tardy students, the earlier clearing of Highland intersection and in front of the schools supports this change," said Donelan.

The study was originally supposed to last two days, but Donelan said that the results were so positive that they continued through the week to get a larger data set.

"Be prepared, that this may become the new normal," he said. "Chief Daly is committed to the safety of pedestrians and reducing Judy's time in the street.  Of course, the motorists and traffic flow are also his priority.  I appreciate him allowing me to work on these surveys."

Donelan said that they are adjusting the time in which Kiskadin begins directing traffic in the afternoon from a start time of 2:30 to a new start time at 2:55. She also finishes now at 3:15 instead of 3:30.
The intersection of Highland and Fort Thomas at 3:15 p.m. with a clear intersection. FTM file. 
"This is a 66% decrease in the time she is standing in the roadway.  Chief Daly and the city approve of any procedures that reduces risk to our employees, while still maintaining the same level of service.  We are truly lucky to have such a committed employee like Judy Kiskadin," said Donelan.
Judy's intersection at 3:15 p.m.
Photo: Morning backup on S. Fort Thomas Ave. All traffic was completely clear by 7:56 a.m.

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