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The City Of Parsons, KS Addresses Traffic On Highway 59 - KOAM TV 7

The City Of Parsons, KS Addresses Traffic On Highway 59

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The City of Parsons, Kansas is looking at plans to reduce congestion on Highway-59, by creating an "Access Management Plan." The City says including turning lanes, and more exits could not only cut down on traffic, but reduce accidents and improve economic development as well. 

Kerry Ast works for Old Dominion Freight Line in Parsons, Kansas. Ast says Old Dominion employs about 250 truckers in Parsons alone. And says since the bypass was added between US-59 and 400 highways traffic has been an issue his drivers have had to work around.
  
"The area has grown considerably, producing congestion, making it more and more difficult, increasingly difficult, to get access to Highway 59 and 400," Ast said.
  
Which is why Ast and other interested businesses in Parsons came to the town's municipal building. The city is working with Kansas Department of Transportation (K-DOT) and Affinis Corporation to discuss a US-59 "Access Management Plan" in hopes of cutting down congestion and continuing to help with economic development along the highway that runs straight through town.

"Turn lanes, maybe traffic signals, reductions of access points, maybe combining entrances, so those could all be things that might be done," said K-DOT Engineer Wayne Gudmonson.   

And the city tells us that plans for a new Holiday Inn Express and Convention Center has spearheaded the whole project. 

"When you look at proposed traffic flows and patterns the real lynch pin in this was an 80 room hotel property and an 8000 sq foot convention center when you look at that need, it would be remiss if we didn't look at the whole corridor need," said Parsons Chamber of Commerce President Jim Zaleski.
 
In fact, Ast says the need is already there.
  
"Businesses looking toward the future, they don't plan to shrink they've got growth plans as well and it's just an over all consensus of concern," Ast said.
 
The City says by developing this "Access Management Plan," it will open doors to several grants from K-DOT -- to help economic growth continue into the future.  
The City says the results of today's meeting will be presented to the City Commission on Thursday. A meeting for public input will take place in about a month's time. A proposed access management plan should be available by about July. 

To visit the City of Parsons' website, click here.      
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