By jeanne starmack
A traffic study has determined that four-way stop signs are warranted at the intersection of Fifth Street and state Route 616.
The city asked its engineering consulting firm, MS Consultants of Youngstown, for the study in December after residents in the neighborhood said they were afraid a zone change for two parcels of property there would make speeding and accidents worse, Mayor Terry Stocker said.
About 20 residents came to a Struthers Zoning and Annexation Commission meeting in November to talk about their concerns over a change from residential to commercial so the Struthers Federal Credit Union can build a building there.
There is going to be a public hearing at 7 p.m. Monday in city council chambers at the municipal building, 5 Elm St., about the zone change and the traffic study.
Council’s zoning committee is having the hearing. The city’s zoning commission will make a recommendation on whether to approve the changes to council’s finance and legislation committee. If the recommendation is for approval, council will bring the legislation to the floor for a vote.
Gary Diorio of MS Consultants told the council at its caucus meeting Wednesday the intersection meets the Ohio Department of Transportation’s requirements for a four-way stop, based on traffic volume and the number of correctable accidents.
“They are the type where people pulled out on someone else,” he said.
“It will make the intersection a lot safer,” Stocker said.
Safety Services Director Ed Wildes said the city had to have the study to make sure the stop signs meet ODOT criteria.
“I can’t just put stop signs up,” he said.
“It’s in writing,” Diorio said. “It’s based on ODOT’s standards so the city is covered legally.”
There are two-way stop signs at the intersection now.