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Study: No 4-way stop is needed
MONROE - A recent traffic study of the intersection of 6th Avenue West and West 8th Street has found that a four-way stop would not improve traffic conditions.

The Public Safety Committee asked Engineering Supervisor Al Gerber in February to have the Monroe Walmart include the intersection by Taco Bell in the traffic study Walmart was already conducting. The study, meant to look at traffic lights leading into its parking lot, was part of an agreement Walmart had with the city after it moved from its previous West 8th Street location.

The study found the intersection, which is currently a three-way stop, is running smoothly. The study was performed by the company Traffic Analysis and Design, which counted cars during peak traffic times in the morning from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m., in the afternoon from noon to 1:30 p.m. and in the evening from 4:15 to 5 p.m.

Intersections are rated at acceptable levels of service ranging from A through E, with E representing jammed conditions. Gerber said the intersection is operating at an acceptable level of C or better during peak traffic hours.

Monroe Common Council President Brooke Bauman, a member of the public safety committee, she said she is fine without a four-way stop.

"As long as drivers are safe I don't see any issues," Bauman said.

The issue was brought to the committee in February because Police Chief Fred Kelley had received a number of complaints from citizens that the intersection was confusing, and drivers heading southbound through the intersection tend to stop 50 percent of the time even though they have no stop sign.

Gerber said the intersection may have to be revisited when construction of the West 8th Street project starts in 2015. The city is considering replacing the pavement, curbs and gutters, sidewalks, storm sewer, sanitary sewer and traffic signals, as well as burying overhead electric lines and installing fiber conduit between Wisconsin 69 and 6th Avenue West. The project is being analyzed by Fehr-Graham Engineering and Environmental, and they will be looking into the feasibility of a roundabout at the 6th Avenue West intersection.

"The Walmart study did not take into consideration the projected improvements to the surrounding areas," Gerber said.