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Traffic Woes at Shurmer-Howe Intersection Being Studied

City hires engineering firm to see how to improve traffic flow

The city is hiring an engineering firm to study how to improve traffic flow at one of Strongsville's most frustrating intersections -- Howe and Shurmer.

City Council this week hired Euthenics Inc. to perform a traffic study at the three-way corner, which a number of motorists have dubbed the worst in Strongsville.

Drivers often has to wait several minutes for the light to change.

"You can sit at that red light for up to five minutes," one reader complained to Strongsville Patch in February.

Strongsville Patch in several stories about the city's traffic problems.

Euthenics said it will do traffic counts on a typical weekday to gauge the volume of cars, then recommend how to best fix the intersection. 

City Engineer Ken Mikula said the study will determine whether another lane should be added to Shurmer Road to separate the left- and right-turn traffic. 

Currently, cars turning right often have to wait behind a line of vehicles making left turns. 

City officials said they are aware of the problem, but the signal has to favor Howe Road, one of the city's busiest roads, to keep traffic from stacking up.

Also, Strongville's lights are synchronized so that changing one would affect all the others in the area.

Euthenics will be paid $3,200 for the traffic study.

Beverly September 06, 2012 at 12:40 PM
Seriously? We have to pay a firm to study the obvious? we know already needs to be done,as seems to be stated in the article.This ranks right up there with another unnecessary $30k sign paid for by taxpayers "because the businesses wanted it". How about what the citizens want since it's our money you are squandering. Guess there is no need to vote for any levies or bond issues of any kind for a long time because our city must be rolling in it if we can afford to spend so frivolously.
Jason September 06, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Beverly...those signs on 71 were not 30k....they were 130k!
Beverly September 06, 2012 at 04:13 PM
Sorry-didn't realize the typo-I did know that & it's ludicrous that that money was spent like that when there are so many services that could be improved upon in this city with that money.I'm wondering how it will affect the upcoming issues asking taxpayers for money/and or renewals.
Stephen diLauro September 06, 2012 at 05:32 PM
Although an engineering study might come up with a solution or set of solutions not obvious, why not immediately install the aforementioned right-turn lane on Shurmer, which is obviously needed, regardless of any other changes to that intersection? As soon as that is completed (which should not take long), do these other things simultaneously: shorten the Howe light cycle by, say, 30 seconds; and post a sign on southbound Howe (just south of Route 82/past the first mall entrance/exit light) that reads, "Use Both Lanes To Merge Point", to take full advantage of both lanes, minimizing the southbound left-lane backup. (Note: The existing sign just south of the second mall entrance/exit is a "Merge" sign, not a "Yield" sign, making right-lane driving to the merge point both legal and appropriate.) The Strongsville Traffic Engineering Department could then monitor (study) traffic flow in the entire area - - and Patch could conduct a survey among those traveling in the area to find out if Howe/Shurmer congestion has been alleviated (without causing problems elsewhere in the area due to the light synchronization system that exists).
carol merkle September 06, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Just widen Howe and add a turning lane to Shurmer Howe needs to be widen and the longer you wait the more it will cost. .
lyn September 06, 2012 at 06:13 PM
Maybe carol is right and Howe should be widened. And, okay, I'll say it, you must all be waiting for it- Maybe we should be widening Howe instead of the rest of Pearl. If you were to drive down both at any time you would easily see that Howe is the street that is overloaded with traffic and not Pearl. So why not ease the traffic backup where it really is in the city instead of pouring those millions into that southern end of Pearl where traffic is NOT a problem and does NOT give access to Foltz Industrial area by any stretch of the imagination. And PLEASE, can someone answer this- How much did the city of Strongsville have to contribute for Phase 1 of Pearl widening (from Post Office all the way to Ellsworth) - that part that was badly needed even from the time they widened from 82 to the Post Office And how much will the city of Strongsville have to contribute for Phase 2 for that small section they now want to do of widening Pearl from Ellsworth to Boston? I keep asking but no one seems to have the answer, or wants to give the answer.
Debbie Palmer September 06, 2012 at 08:54 PM
Lyn, the city has been planning to contribute about $3 million to Phase 2. I'll have to ask about Phase 1.
LindaMRK September 06, 2012 at 09:03 PM
If you widen Howe that would leave it near impossible for people on streets like Glendale, Cypress and Lanier to pull out. We already have to wait to pull out and when we do it's squeeling tires fast.
lyn September 06, 2012 at 11:18 PM
If Phase 2 costs about $12mil and ODOT puts in $6mil, we put in $3mil - where is the other $3mill coming from? Or maybe my figures are off.
lyn September 06, 2012 at 11:50 PM
Debbie- I did find you wrote this 2/23/12: " the $12.7 million project. The city plans to contribute $3 and was casting around for the additional $3.7 in other grants." So, is the balance of $3.7mil covered yet, or is the city still on the hook for $6.7million after ODOT covers $6mil? And thanks, I am still curious what the city paid towards Phase 1.
Mel September 07, 2012 at 10:59 AM
Pretty much you would be taking their front yards and putting a 4 lane road oh 5 with a turning literally at their front doors would a 3 lane fit? Who know's but I fear that to would put a road at the front doors of those residents and lower home values, that cannot handle much more devaluing. No pearl does not need the rest of the expansion, by the time you get to that point everyone turns left or right on Drake.
Kat September 08, 2012 at 02:50 AM
I think a 3 lane road would be the best option for Howe. It would allow a "safe zone" for cars turning left out of Lanier, etc. And it would ease the back up from cars turning left from S-bound or N-bound on Howe.
lyn September 10, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Katherine- I agree with you. It would also be the less invasive way to widen for property owners, and the least expensive for the city. We can't keep ignoring the Howe problem. And, how much longer can we ignore the traffic problem on Royalton Rd (82) going west from I71? Even in the middle of the day it is backed up. And, Albion Rd, repair has been delayed again - that road closed May, 2011. But instead the city spends money ($130,000?) on a sign on I71 and MILLIONS to widen a small section of Pearl that isn't necessary. Both those are nice to be done, but not at the expense of other more pressing projects. PRIORITIES!!!
John Wells September 10, 2012 at 03:08 PM
talking about priorities, what about creating a new 95,00 dollar double-dipper position for the police chief since he "has to" retire. I always thought old chiefs could make more money in the private sector, but I guess they might expect results.
lyn September 10, 2012 at 03:29 PM
WOW! I had missed that. John, would you know the answers to a few questions that I just asked on the Patch's 8-31-12 article you must be referring to: http://strongsville.patch.com/articles/police-chief-to-become-city-s-safety-director
Lisa January 09, 2013 at 01:16 PM
I believe Howe needs to widened as well, way to much traffic. I hate that light on corner of Shurmer and Howe. I have seen so many run the light thinking it was broken, no doubt!

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