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Speed trailer set up to help manage detour

Published On: Jun 05 2014 04:33:53 PM MDT
Updated On: Jun 05 2014 11:11:54 PM MDT
MISSOULA, Mont. -

Residents in one Missoula neighborhood are concerned about traffic and speed after a detour on a busy street is bringing more traffic their way.

The city started construction on Third Street last week. The project started at the Russell intersection and will move west. It’s estimated to take three to four months.

A detour from Third takes drivers to Fifth Street, and some residents say the area is congested and at times dangerous.

Project Manager Doug Harby sent a crew out early Thursday, to place a speed trailer near the intersection of Fifth and Garfield.

“To let drivers know what the speed limit is and what they're driving and also to inform the residents. They can look at it and say 'These guys are speeding' or 'They're not speeding,'” Harby said.”It’s the fact that you're running a busy collector street on residential streets.”

Carole Forry is the head of Wildflower Montessori, a school that sits near the corner of Fifth and Catlin.

“We've seen a lot of traffic...a lot of people are not being not as cautious as they should be, especially with a school with small children around,” she said Thursday.

The hope is that this speed trailer will remind drivers not to top 25 miles an hour.

“I think it will help slow people down a little bit,” Forry said. She added that she hopes it reminds drivers that there are families and kids in the neighborhood.

“I don't think people realize that we're here, because we're kind of in a home. But I think it's important that people see how fast they're going.”

Harby agrees and recommends that people stay out of the area all together if possible. “Try to seek alternative routes. There's just no getting around it. This is going to be congested; it's going to be slow.”

The construction and detours will last three to four months. The detour is for through traffic but there is local access for businesses in the construction area. 

Harby said Fifth Street will remain part of the detour for the duration of the work.

This is the first of three phases that should be finished in the summer of 2016.