City moves to ease traffic flow along Leon Smith Parkway
by Eddie Burkhalter
eburkhalter@annistonstar.com
Sep 10, 2013 | 4543 views |  0 comments | 60 60 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Traffic begins to line up on Leon Smith Parkway in Oxford near the Oxford Exchange and Oxford Commons shopping centers. (Photo by Bill Wilson/The Anniston Star)
Traffic begins to line up on Leon Smith Parkway in Oxford near the Oxford Exchange and Oxford Commons shopping centers. (Photo by Bill Wilson/The Anniston Star)
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OXFORD – In order to improve traffic flow along Leon Smith Parkway, the Oxford City Council on Tuesday agreed to hire a company to update the timing of traffic lights along the increasingly busy parkway.

Richard Caudle, a transportation consultant with Skipper Consulting Inc., told the council at Tuesday’s meeting that the sequencing of those lights was established when the Oxford Exchange was built, but retail growth there in recent years has put a strain on the system, he explained.

The eastbound ramps on Interstate 20 use cameras to detect cars and time the traffic lights, but two of those cameras are broken, Caudle said. Additionally, a device that controls the traffic light sequencing has failed and will need to be repaired.

The council agreed to pay the consulting firm $4,500 to complete the work, which will take about four weeks, Caudle said.

“We want to get it done before the shoppers start heading that way in masses,” said Council President Steven Waits, referring to the upcoming holidays.

In an item of property management business, Waits noted that an old maintenance building near Oxford Lake Park stands in pale contrast to the recent renovation of the lake and nearby civic center. The council agreed Tuesday to pay Birmingham-based engineering firm Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood $6,600 to study the land in preparation to replace the aging facility with a new building.

In other business, the council:

— Passed a resolution to clarify an error in a previous tax abatement agreement for the Bynum manufacturing plant Kronospan. The June 11 resolution incorrectly stated the company’s projected cost of an expansion at the plant. The actual cost of that expansion is estimated to be $18 million.

— Announced the council’s next regular meeting will take place at 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24 at City Hall. The change was to allow the council time to discuss the city’s 2014 budget, which must be approved by Oct. 1.

— Announced that the musical group Blood, Sweat and Tears, with guest singer Bo Bice, will perform at the Oxford Performing Arts Center Thursday, Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. Tickets are available in advance at the center and at the door the day of the performance.

Staff writer Eddie Burkhalter: 256-235-3563. On Twitter @Burkhalter_Star.

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