Firm offers options for Parkville to alter traffic flow in downtown area

PARKVILLE, Mo. — The Parkville Board of Aldermen received a first peek at proposed plans to reconfigure the Highway 9 corridor before a public open house scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 5 at the Parkville Presbyterian Church. Representatives from consulting firm CFS Engineers presented reccomendations at the open house. Project manager Sabin Yanez outlined the findings of their analysis, using data from previous studies and various sources, including recent traffic studies and Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) data. CFS has arrived at three possible options for the downtown area — a traffic signal installation at Highway 9 and Second Street, a signal at East and First streets or a roundabout just north ofHighway 9.

Based on 1 percent traffic increase per year for the next 20 years, Yanez and his team analyzed the pros and cons of each option and found that with the exception of the roundabout option, travel times would improve. While roundabouts are now a common traffic solution — and have been proposed for the Parkville downtown area in past plans — Yanez said he believes they’re not an ideal option. The roundabout would take considerable space to construct, with a potential footprint forcing the relocation of the Parkville post office.

The consultant’s recommended option is to install a traffic signal at East and First streets and reconfigure stop signs to optimize traffic flow in the area.

Traveling north from downtown, the consulting firm also suggested reconfiguration of the Main Street and Highway 9 intersection. Yanez noted that many of the properties in this area have yards or parking areas that technically lie within the MoDOT right-of-way.

Another heavy-traffic area of focus for the study is the Parkville Commons area.

Yanez said he recommended installation of a stoplight at the intersection of Highway 9 and Clark Avenue, although one could also be warranted at Highway 9 and 63rd Street, based on MoDOT standards. He suggested a light at Highway 9 and Clark Avenue could be coupled with the construction of a short connecting street on the east side of Highway 9. This would connect to 62nd Street, allowing residents of the Pinecrest neighborhood to have a light-controlled access point and could spur development on the east side of the highway.

Also at the meeting, alderman Kari Lamer was scheduled to resign from the board this month due to a relocation out of her ward. However, mayor Nan Johnston reported Lamer’s plans may have changed and the resignation was now on hold for a few days until the Lamer family could finalize their new course of action.

The board also questioned when construction would begin on the QuikTrip store planned for the intersection of Highways 9 and 45.

Parkville director of community development Sean Ackerson said the project was experiencing weather delays and contractors were also waiting for utility relocation. The revised timetable calls for grading to begin in September or October with the store opening still scheduled for May or June 2016.