Upcoming road construction has prompted the city of Stillwater to install a temporary traffic signal at the intersection of Ninth and Western.

According to Theron Smith, deputy director of Stillwater Public Works, the light will flash yellow when first activated and when traffic control is not needed.

Installation of the light was prompted by utility relocation work that has begun in advance of the reconstruction of 12th Avenue. Electric, water and sewer utilities will have to relocated before the project can begin and those relocations will prompt sections of 12th Avenue to be closed temporarily.

“We anticipate an increase in traffic flow on Ninth Avenue,” Smith said.

Ralph Kinder, director of public works, said the light will be activated when utility work begins and then set to blink yellow during downtime between the end of utility relocation and the beginning of reconstruction of 12th Avenue.

Once the reconstruction begins, the signal will remain activated on a timed sequence. According to Smith, the timing will be matched to the signal at 12th and Western and the city will monitor the signal to look for different traffic dynamics.

Stillwater Power has already begun relocating utility poles and electric lines along 12th Avenue.

According to Smith, the city is close to acquiring all of the right-of-way needed for the project. All utility relocation plans have been approved for the projects as well and some of those relocations have 75 to 80 day schedules.

Smith said the final plans for the project are being reviewed and no roadway plans can be bid until the utility relocations are complete.

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