By Shereen Siewert
The city will receive $552,858 in federal funding to defray the cost of upgrades to Scott Street in downtown Wausau, a project that aims to improve driver and pedestrian safety and reduce crashes throughout the corridor.
Wausau will kick in $71,429 for the $627,287 project, according to city documents. The plan calls for adding overhead traffic signals, high visibility crosswalks with countdown pedestrian timers and improved street lighting at several intersections. In addition, a new video detection system will be installed at the intersection of Fifth and Scott Street that will increase signal operation efficiency, particularly during non-peak periods.
A transportation study showed a pattern of right angle crashes at the Fifth Street intersection, with 37 crashes in the past five years alone. Of those, 16 involved injuries, city documents state.
Work on the projects won’t begin until July or August 2020. But one change could happen as early as this week. That’s when crews will establish new pavement markings at Fifth and Scott Street, according to City Engineer Allen Wesolowski. The projects were unveiled last week during a public involvement meeting at City Hall.
The lane changes, stretching from Fifth to First Street, will reduce the number of driving lanes to two, but will widen the driving lane from 10 feet to 12 feet while adding a six-foot bicycle lane.
The proposed schedule is weather dependent.