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Crosswalk work to cause delays on busy Route 9 in Hadley

  • The four lanes of traffic on this section of Russell Street (Rte. 9) in the center of Hadley, between West and Goffe streets, was reduced to one lane in each direction on Monday. GAZETTE STAFF/KEVIN GUTTING

  • The four lanes of traffic on this section of Russell Street (Route 9) in the center of Hadley, between West and Goffe streets, were reduced to one lane in each direction on Monday. GAZETTE STAFF/KEVIN GUTTING



For the Bulletin
Sunday, April 15, 2018

HADLEY — Drivers on Route 9 should expect delays over the next four months as construction of an improved crosswalk near the juvenile court began on Monday.

The $200,000 plan for the new crosswalk is expected to last until August and is a project by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, spokesman Patrick Marvin said.

The project will replace two existing crosswalks with a high-intensity activated crosswalk in front of Hadley Juvenile Court, 116 Russell St., Hadley Town Administrator David Nixon said. When removing the two crosswalks, workers will have to also remove their wheelchair ramps.

The two crosswalks being replaced are located in front of the Most Holy Redeemer church and the Phillips 66 gas station. The crosswalk near the gas station “hampered the line of sight for drivers by an S-turn in the road,” Nixon said.

“The construction is taking two crosswalks with inadequate signalization and replacing those with a new crosswalk that has high-intensity signals,” Nixon said.

The high-intensity crosswalk differs from a regular crosswalk as its bright, over-the-road beacon increases incoming driver’s awareness of marked crosswalks. The signage activates when a pedestrian pushes a crosswalk button, flashing yellow to cars before becoming steady red, where a pedestrian can then cross the street.

“The crosswalk is trying to improve the safety of that area with a newer version of a light-bar system above the road,” said Hadley Department of Public Works Director Marlo Warner.

The project was originally planned to begin last October however unexpected bad weather pushed the project’s start date to April, Nixon said.

“Drivers should expect there to be some road delays near the construction area. The road is being reduced to one lane of travel in each direction,” Nixon said.

Future work on Route 9 expected to begin this spring and last about year involves constructing new sidewalks and wheelchair ramps on the south side of Route 9 from South Maple Street to the Amherst town line and on the north side of Route 9 from Route 116 to the Amherst town line, according to the DOT website. Other proposed work will include improvements to pedestrian accommodations, driveway reconstruction, pavement markings, crosswalks and new signs.