Our View: Headaches from road work worth it if traffic improves

November 12, 2018

At some point, traffic will flow smoothly on Lake Havasu Avenue. That time is many months away.

In the meantime, drivers and the businesses along the busy street will have to endure construction that will make over the street and three of the busiest intersections in town.

The highly anticipated (or possibly highly dreaded) road work is to begin in a few weeks and extend through Memorial Day. It will incorporate medians to prevent left turns and upgrade traffic signals. The work is concentrated between the intersections with Mesquite and Swanson avenues, including McCullough Boulevard.

Obviously, there will be much traffic and business disruption in the area. Beyond direct effects on businesses along Lake Havasu Avenue, the work will likely be quite a disruption for anyone crossing London Bridge to the Island. All of that traffic has to go through the McCulloch intersection with Lake Havasu Avenue.

For visitors arriving along State Route 95, getting across the bridge requires crossing at least two of the three intersections in the construction zone. Even without road work, the directions are a little confusing. We hope signage on the highway and streets clearly direct drivers over the bridge.

One little-known part of the city’s heritage will get paved over in the work. Those are the large stamped concrete bridge representations in each of the three affected intersections. Degraded from years of traffic, the artwork isn’t very visible from ground level and many drivers probably regard them as just bumps in the road.

There will be significant adjustment during construction and, for businesses along the stretch of road, continuing fallout even afterward due to turn restrictions.

The work should probably be done in summer, when traffic is lighter, but it will be an inconvenience no matter the timing.

Even with all the trouble, the $3.6 million project will prove worthwhile if it improves traffic flow in the area and, with better traffic signals and timing, helps the flow along the parallel highway.

— Today’s News-Herald

Update hourly