Traffic study for Combe Road approved

Aug 13 2013 - 10:26pm

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OGDEN -- Weber County has hired an engineering firm to conduct a traffic study on Combe Road.

Currently, a section of Combe Road between Eastwood Boulevard and 6425 South, near the northeast corner of the city of Uintah, is a one-way street. On Tuesday, county commissioners entered into an agreement with Hales Engineering, of Lehi, to evaluate changing that section back into a two-way street.

The contract stipulates that the traffic study be done by Dec. 1.

Weber County Engineer Jared Andersen said, a public hearing on the issue could be held within a month and that, depending upon the results of the study and public feedback, the section of Combe Road could even be back to two-way traffic by the end of the year.

The county will pay $4,250 for the study.

"Right now, there's nothing that tells me it's not going to work (changing the section back to a two-way flow)," Andersen said. "If it's wide enough, and barring any other problems, it would make sense."

Because the section of roadway in question involves both Uintah city and an unincorporated area of Weber County, any final decision will have to go before both the county and the city, Andersen said.

And that's where things could get interesting.

"There are a lot more issues involved than just turning it back into a two-way street," Uintah Mayor Sue Bybee said.

With her city's limited budget, Bybee said she's grateful the county is offering the resources to study this issue. However, she also hopes they'll study all the issues involved -- including stormwater runoff problems, curb and gutter and a host of traffic challenges.

"Hopefully, they'll address all of those issues," Bybee said.

Among some residents' concerns is that returning that section to a two-way road could funnel more traffic into the area.

"People could have trouble getting out of their driveways," she said. "If switching back to a two-way road brings more cars down there, it would affect our citizens greatly."

County officials estimate that section of Combe Road has been one-way for six to eight years. Andersen doesn't know why the road was changed to a one-way flow in the first place, but the new study will look at whether that's still the best option.

"Because of all the traffic improvements in the past few years, it might not make sense for it to be a one-way anymore," he said.

However, Bybee remembers why it was changed to a one-way street, and she isn't sure much has changed.

"It was done because of the amount of traffic on that road, and how fast people were going down it," she said.

Bybee acknowledges that the area's residents are split on the matter.

"Some want it a two-way, and some want it a one-way," she said.

She said most of the traffic in that area comes from the unincorporated area, but that people in her city sometimes can't even get out of their own driveways.

"It's just one of those things that needs to be addressed," Bybee said. "We need to see if we can work together for the good of the citizens of the city and the unincorporated area."

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