The traffic signal at the intersection at Girard and “B” streets is failing and overdue for a total infrastructure rebuild. Unfortunately that would cost $250,000. So the City plans to study the intersection over a 90-day period, with the intent to permanently replace the traffic light with all-way stop signs.
Q: Why do you have to remove the traffic signal?
A: The signal is the City's last out-of-date signal. All its signal poles are failing, and the cabinet needs replacement.
Q: Won't losing the light make the intersection less safe?
A: Our goal is always to ensure safety. Based on policy and prior practice, we plan to replace the current signal with an all-way stop, after 90-days of study while utilizing an all-way red flashing light to allow motorists, cyclists and pedestrians get acquainted with the change. At other intersections that converted from signal to all-way stops there has been no increase in accidents or significant traffic delays.
Q: Why not just spend the money to replace the traffic signal?
A: It is imprudent to spend a quarter million dollars to replace a traffic signal when an all-way stop would be just as safe and effective. This is a change that has already been successful at several other intersections in Bellingham: Grand and Flora, Commercial and Flora, Unity and Flora, and Commercial and Champion.