Traffic jam marks debut of school near Lexington

tflach@thestate.comAugust 19, 2013 

Road improvements intended to ease congestion at a busy Lexington intersection are in limbo. County officials and legislators meet Friday to see if anything can be done. The problems are expected to worsen at hwy-37 and /Corley Mill Road intersection when River Bluff High School opens this fall with 1400 students.

KIM KIM FOSTER-TOBIN — kkfoster@thestate.com Buy Photo

— Congestion quickly became a hallmark of the new River Bluff High School near Lexington Monday.

Traffic backed up about a mile at times on U.S. 378 and Corley Mill Road as many of the 1,500 students went to their first day of classes, police said.

“It was about what we expected,” Lexington police chief Terrence Green said. “People are going to have to be patient.”

The flow was smooth enough that officers didn’t have to intervene and direct traffic to speed it along, he said.

But police will check daily on the situation as a safeguard, he said.

State traffic engineers also are keeping watch to see if traffic signals on U.S. 378 needs to be adjusted to help vehicles going to and leaving the school keep moving.

Bottlenecks around the school are expected to continue into the spring.

State and local leaders are racing to complete improvements designed to alleviate problems in the heavily traveled area.

But the project is at least six months behind after some landowners in the area refused to donate slivers of road frontage needed.

County officials have gone to court to acquire those slivers.

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