Traffic rerouting takes a detour

Faced with the choice of dodging a “Road Closed” sign to quickly bypass bridge construction, or taking the seven-mile detour mandated by the city of Grand Junction, it’s hardly surprising that many motorists are choosing option No. 1.

And they’re doing so, even though they could face monumental fines for taking a short-cut detour around bridge work on Monument Road.

City public works officials may have planned well for the reconstruction of the old bridge a little bit south of Broadway on Monument Road, but it doesn’t appear that adequate thought or public education was given to the detour.

Did city officials really believe drivers would eagerly go seven miles and at least 20 minutes out of their way when there are public roads that could take them around the bridge construction in a couple of minutes?

The possibility of receiving traffic tickets costing up to $221 and resulting in as many as four points being assessed against their driver’s licenses doesn’t seem to be a big deterrence to motorists, either.

We understand that the small neighborhood streets close to where the bridge construction is occurring weren’t designed to handle the kind of traffic that regularly travels on Monument Road and that residents along those streets aren’t eager for hordes of additional vehicles on their roads.

But a seven-mile detour is enough to make anyone look for a shortcut. Before turning those who use the shortcuts into very angry drivers with tickets to pay, the city should devote more time and personnel to politely direct motorists to the longer detour.


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