Q: Countless times I've nearly been hit while traveling north on 110th Avenue Northeast in downtown Bellevue when a southbound driver turns...
Q: Countless times I’ve nearly been hit while traveling north on 110th Avenue Northeast in downtown Bellevue when a southbound driver turns left in front of me onto Northeast Eighth Street. This is when I have a green light and the right of way through the intersection. Can anything be done to make things safer, such as a left-turn-only light for southbound drivers? Someone is going to get hurt.
A: Traffic volumes are still low enough at this intersection that Bellevue will keep allowing permissive left turns (turning while yielding to oncoming traffic) from 110th Avenue Northeast to Northeast Eighth Street, said Mark Poch, the city’s traffic engineering manager.
Poch said the city has no record of accidents there over the past three years that involved vehicles turning left. And, permissive left turns reduce delays overall because they don’t require another signal cycle.
Bellevue considers installing “protected only” left turns (the kind that get their own green arrows) when traffic gets busy enough that people have a tough time turning left, when left-turn accidents are common or to improve pedestrian safety
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But to respond to your concern, the city will remove a traffic light from the lane farthest left, Poch said, to prevent drivers from mistaking a circular green light over that lane for a green arrow. Bellevue also installed a sign to remind southbound 110th Avenue Northeast traffic to yield to oncoming traffic before turning left, he said.
“Removing the furthest left signal head will help address these types of mistakes, while still leaving an adequate number of signal heads for safe and efficient traffic operations,” Poch said.
• Another way off the Sammamish Plateau
Got an Eastside traffic question? Send it to us by e-mail, email@example.com; by fax, 425-453-0449; by mail, The Seattle Times Eastside News Bureau, 1200 112th Ave. N.E., Suite C-145, Bellevue, WA 98004.
Sound Transit, the state Department of Transportation and the city of Sammamish kicked off construction of a park-and-ride lot at 228th Avenue Southeast and Issaquah-Pine Lake Road in Sammamish yesterday. The $7.7 million project will feature 265 stalls, bus-loading areas, space to store bikes and a storm-water-treatment system to protect nearby Pine Lake. It should be done by spring.
Bellevue: For details of the roadwork under way downtown, visit www.cityofbellevue.org/transportation
Medina: Expect temporary road closures from 8:30 through at least 10 a.m. tomorrow as 5K competitors run and walk south on 82nd Avenue Northeast, west on Northeast Eighth Street, north on Evergreen Point Road, east on Northeast 24th Street, south on 84th Avenue Northeast and back to Northeast 12th Street. Use Evergreen Point Road to enter or leave during the event. Call police Chief Jeffrey Chen at 425-233-6420 for more information.
Karen Gaudette: 206-515-5618 or firstname.lastname@example.org