‘Whoa,’ say Ely officials to MnDOT plan that would create a ‘one-stoplight town’

A plan to eliminate one set of stoplights in Ely and maybe take down a second set in the future doesn’t sound good to some city officials.

There are only three intersections in the city with stoplights, and while officials have long lobbied for a fourth, that seems unlikely now.

“We’re not a one-stoplight town,” Ely Mayor Roger Skraba said, after hearing what the Minnesota Department of Transportation has in mind, says the Ely Echo.

This summer the state will renovate Hwy. 169 as it runs through town as the main drag, and at the time plans to eliminate the traffic signal at the corner of Sheridan Street and First Avenue East.

And when the work is complete, the state will evaluate whether lights at a second intersection, at Sheridan And Third Avenue East, should come down, too.

City council members seem ready to fight any plans to remove the lights on Third, even as they’re getting used to losing the lights on First.

But at least there is no suggestion from MnDOT of eliminating the lights at Sheridan and Central.

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Alex Cecchini on 12/11/2012 - 11:25 pm.

    Calm Down, Ely

    It might be good for you:


    We as a society spend so much engineering time and money on overdesigning our roads in an effort to keep them safer, and the result is.. well, not much. Road accidents will continue if cars are allowed to drive at higher speeds, and if pedestrians/bikers are at all involved, the casualties will come from them (not the drivers).

  2. Submitted by Ross Williams on 12/13/2012 - 10:43 am.

    MNDOT, Destoyers of Communities

    We need to fire everyone at MNDOT and start over. Its not a transportation agency. Its a highway engineering firm whose business model depends on increasing dependency on automobiles. Pedestrians and bicyclists are the enemy and access to businesses and services is something to be “managed” rather than enhanced.

    The idea that increasing mobility by getting vehicles through Ely efficiently is a primary value is absurd. The primary reason people are in Ely is to access the services there. Getting people around town is far more important than getting people through it. And that means getting them out of their cars, not forcing them to get back in them and then channeling all the resulting traffic through one intersection.

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