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No timeline on new University Town Centre traffic lights

MORGANTOWN — Just over a year after the town of Granville, the Monongalia County Commission and developer WestRidge agreed to split the cost of addressing two problem intersections in the University Town Centre, there is still no timeline for when that work could begin.

Granville Mayor Patty Lewis offered the commission an update on Wednesday.

“I know it seems like that project has gotten buried, but it hasn’t,” she said.

The project would construct two traffic lights — one where University Town Centre Drive passes between Walmart and the WVU Medicine facility and another at the bottom of the hill between Granville Square and Sesame Drive, which provides access to Chick-fil-A, Wendy’s and Panda Express.

Lewis explained the lower intersection is causing delays as Potesta Engineering raised concerns about the accuracy of the information provided regarding underground utilities.

The town only has so much ground to work with in order to avoid the need for property acquisition, which would mean more money and more time.

“They need to look at where we can drill to set the poles. Potesta is not real comfortable with where they’ve been told the utilities are,” Lewis said, adding that Potesta intends to drill to confirm those locations. “The area is so confined that they have to absolutely be precise to make sure we don’t hit a gas line or something.”

The town came to the commission last September looking for help.

It was explained those intersections, particularly the one at Sesame Drive, produce the most serious accidents in Granville’s jurisdiction due to a combination of speed and congestion, as drivers attempt to turn across traffic in both directions.

Both WVU Medicine and the town, which owns Sesame Drive, have placed temporary “Right-turn only” signs for traffic entering University Town Centre Drive until the lights are installed. Walmart and Granville Square ownership declined to do so.

The total estimated price tag for the lights is $675,000 split three ways between Granville, the county and WestRidge.

In other Granville news, the town will hold a tree-lighting ceremony at 6 p.m. Dec. 1 at Veteran’s Memorial Park.

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