PennDOT denies four-way stop request at Main and Hanna

LOCK HAVEN – Stop signs and parking spots were a major topic at last night’s Lock Haven City Council meeting.

At their previous meeting, council requested that the intersection of East Main and Hanna streets be turned from a two-way stop area to a four-way.

That request was denied by PennDOT who owns the roadway, City Manager Gregory Wilson said.

PennDOT’s reason was that it “is not warranted at the intersection,” Wilson said.

Two stop signs were placed at the intersection weeks prior due to the stop lights malfunctioning. The system the lights run on is from the 1980s and is unable to be repaired.

Rona Houser, a concerned citizen, attended council’s previous meeting due to an increase in speeding along Main Street since the light went out.

This led to council’s request to PennDOT.

Councilmen William “Bill” Mincer and Joel Long expressed their frustration with the denial.

“That can be a speedway through there because once people get off Constitution Bridge they don’t stop,” Mincer said.

Long agreed that the issue was more with speeding than stopping, but was frustrated that the state won’t allow police officers to use radar guns and other equipment to help control speeding in the area.

“Tell the state to allow police officers to use radar,” he said.

PennDOT representative, District Traffic Signals Manager Jim Roman, was not available for the meeting to provide further insight into the organizations reasoning, Wilson said.

PennDOT also submitted two traffic studies which would recommend the removal of the stop lights at the intersection of Main and Hanna streets and Grove and Water streets.

Two stop signs would be placed on Hanna Street and two on Grove Street.

The studies also recommend parking restrictions be put in place near these intersections which could see the loss of street parking.

At the intersection of East Main and Hanna streets, over 30 parking spots would need to be removed to meet PennDOT’s requirements for sight and stopping distances in a two-way stop intersection.

Approximately 23 would need to be removed in the area of East Water and Grove streets to meet the same requirements.

Council was presented a proposed ordinance that included the removal of these spots in the city’s vehicles and traffic code.

“If we’re putting this in an ordinance… it feels like were removing all these parking spots. I don’t think it’s right,” Mincer said.

Although the removal of these stop signs was listed in the ordinance, it did not mean council couldn’t remove them from the ordinance during the second reading, Wilson said.

The ordinance was barely approved by a 4-3 vote with Long, Mincer and Mayor William Baney voting against.

Council requested a representative from PennDOT attend a meeting so they can discuss the study further before anymore action is taken in regards to the proposed ordinance.

Included in the ordinance was the continued restriction of large truck traffic on Third Avenue.