Monongalia County mayor concerned about safety in growing area near Monongalia County Ballpark

GRANVILLE, W.Va. — Mayor Patty Lewis has been working to get traffic lights added at two high-traffic density areas in the University Town Centre area for nearly three years. Local officials are hoping for some help from the state Division of Highways in order to get that work done this year.

Patty Lewis

Both intersections are in a very busy retail area of Granville, near Morgantown, that continues to grow in popularity due to the wide-variety of popular retailers, restaurants and the Kendrick Family Ballpark at the Monongalia County Baseball Complex.

Lewis said the intersection at the WVU Medicine University Town Center is both a pedestrian and traffic concern, with many people crossing the street from the WVU Medicine facility. The intersection of Sesame Drive is primarily a traffic concern.

“There are many folks that cross there from the Walmart over to the WVU Medical Hospital facility, probably for lunch or just before they go home,” Lewis said.

The DOH opened bids in March for the project that has a price tag of approximately $1.5 million.

Lewis said there is a five to six month wait time for delivery of the poles that will hold the traffic lights, and the DOH happens to have what they need in a yard in Charleston.

Mike Oliverio

If they would allow us to purchase the poles they have in Charleston it would probably cut the installation time in half,” Lewis said.

DOH has said it doesn’t a policy to cover what Lewis has proposed.

State Senator Mike Oliverio, R-Monongalia, said if a state agency has something that a municipal unit needs, there should be a reasonable way to transfer the property with compensation. However, when that item has something to do with public safety, the state agency should make that item or items available to help solve the issue.

“We want the DOH to be available to support our communities in every way they can,” Oliverio said. “Just because there’s a rule or regulation that exists, if it is counter to public safety, I want the rule to be revisited.”

Oliverio said he’s asking the DOH to reconsider its policy.

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