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Stop signs stopped with Commission action
06/19/2018

(KAIR)--The four-way stops at Atchison's 5th and Santa Fe and 6th and Santa Fe are coming down, while those at 3rd and Commercial, 4th and Kansas, and 8th and Commercial will become permanent.

That's the decision made Monday by the Atchison City Commission following a lengthy discussion over the direction to take regarding the stop signs.

Assistant City Manager Justin Pregont brought the issue before the Commission, explaining that city staff maintained that keeping all of the four-way stops in place was the best method for safety. “The reason that this carries a staff recommendation that both [resolutions] be adopted is that we know a couple of things,” Pregont told the Commission. “We know with certainty that both severity and frequency of crashes reduce as speed reduces. That's true for vehicle on vehicle accidents, and that's true for vehicle on pedestrian accidents. We also know that a vehicle travels slowest, and this is going to be a shocker, when it's compelled to stop.”

Ultimately, the Commission decided on a 3-2 vote that the four-way stops located at 3rd and Commercial, 4th and Kansas, and 8th and Commercial should be retained.

Finding approval for the four-way stops at 5th and Santa Fe and 6th and Santa Fe was another matter. Although Commissioner Shawn Rizza made a motion to keep the stop signs in place, no second could be found when Mayor Allen Reavis sought one. "The motion fails for a lack of a second, so we will be removing those stop signs," Reavis stated. 

The four-way stops that will remain in place are located in downtown Atchison, while those to be removed were installed as a method of safety related to the nearby Atchison Middle School.

Reavis directed Pregont to work with Atchison's USD 409 in finding an alternative method of safety. “I do encourage talking with 409, maybe about, what else we can do to do something there to make it safer,” Reavis stated.

Pregont, saying that a process must be followed, said it will take 30 to 40 days to remove the stop signs, which had been put in place on a trial basis.

That trial began early this year, and was extended in March to allow additional time for public input.

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