VINELAND — Cumberland County officials said they will take another look at making the improved intersection of Sherman Avenue and the boulevard less confusing for motorists.
Cumberland County Engineer William Rafferty said work could involve designating some lanes only for left turns and other lanes for right turns and through traffic.
Rafferty said he will be happy to talk about improvements with city officials. That conversation could be forthcoming.
Residents are again telling City Council that the intersection – upgraded in 2011 at a cost of $3 million – is causing accidents because travelers are confused about which lanes they are to use.
The latest request for help occurred during Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
City Council President Anthony Fanucci said he understood the concerns of the motorists who use that intersection. He said he would contact the City Engineer’s Office and ask the staff to talk with their county counterparts to help resolve the problem. T
his would not be the first request by the city for additional help at the intersection: City officials in April told county officials that the intersection improvements caused traffic backups and have motorists confused about which lanes to use and when to turn.
County officials said at the time that they thought new signs would better direct motorists, who just needed more time to get used to an intersection that is vastly different than before the upgrade.
They said no new work on the intersection was planned.
The intersection is one of the busiest in Cumberland County. More traffic is using the intersection because of residential development in the area, along with the growth of nearby Cumberland County College and South Jersey Healthcare Regional Medical Center. The medical center is the county’s only hospital.
The intersection was for years a frustrating area for motorists. The intersection had an odd layout that involved Sherman Avenue, Conrail tracks that split the boulevard into South West Boulevard and South East Boulevard, and a series of four-way stop signs.
The configuration resulted in motorists on Sherman Avenue stopping when they reached one boulevard, then stopping again on a hump where the Conrail tracks go through the intersection.
Motorists could then proceed across the other boulevard.
The revamped intersection that opened in December 2011 after nine months of work added two lanes to Sherman Avenue near the intersection.
The stop signs were replaced with traffic signals. Sherman Avenue was also raised to eliminate the hump at the railroad tracks.
Conrail also improved and widened the railroad-crossing surface.
Contact Thomas Barlas: 609-226-9197 TBarlas@pressofac.com