Intersection stoplight to be added at 29th and Colorado
Fire Station 5 signal to remain but get upgraded
A stoplight is scheduled for installation at 29th Street and Colorado Avenue, probably in the first quarter of next year.
Designed for safety reasons, it will be in addition to the current signal in front of Fire Station 5 (at the northeast corner of the intersection), which has been used for many years to stop traffic when fire trucks need to get in or out.
According to Scott Logan of City Traffic Engineering, the new signal will turn red whenever the fire station light is activated. Otherwise, it will give the majority of green time to avenue traffic. A video camera will record when vehicles come up on 29th - it will then give them a green light of up to 25 seconds, depending on how many vehicles there are.
Another change in the configuration is moving the avenue's pedestrian crossing from the fire station light to the west side of 29th and Colorado. “That will eliminate those pedestrian conflicts when the fire truck pulls out,” Logan said. A button will let pedestrians turn on a walk light that will allow time for people on foot to cross the avenue.
Although no major accidents have been reported, there have been some close calls with the current station light. Fire Station 5 Capt. Steve Watz said the pedestrian crossing has been “an issue; also, “we've had a lot of cars blow through that light. They're confused where to stop or they don't recognize it because it's not at an intersection.”
Another problem is cars from 29th Street taking advantage of the light to shoot out in front of the stopped cars on the avenue. “We definitely have to use a lot of caution,” Watz said.
Because of such safety concerns and the age of the station's light (it will be upgraded as part of the project), Traffic Engineering listed the intersection as its only “High Priority” project in a recent report to City Council on stoplight upgrade needs. Funding will come from a Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority (RTA) program that funds signal improvements.
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