Store owners of a business complex are speaking out against city of Roseburg plans to add a second left turn lane from Stewart Parkway onto Edenbower Boulevard.
In early December, the city announced plans to add the lane from eastbound Stewart Parkway heading left onto Edenbower Boulevard.
Those plans involve adding a concrete barrier that could block some drivers from using the northern driveway of a two-story business complex at the eastern end of Stewart Parkway.
The owner of the complex, Curt Sandfort, complained about the plans to the Roseburg City Council at its meeting Monday night. Three business lessees spoke against the plan as well.
The concrete barrier will prevent drivers heading south on Edenbower Boulevard from making a left turn into the business’s northern driveway, he said. They will also prevent drivers who are exiting the complex from making a left turn from its northern driveway.
Drivers heading south on Edenbower Boulevard would therefore have extreme difficulty getting into the complex, he said.
One lessee, Rick Barnes of Barnes and Associates, said the barrier will add an extra mile of travel time for drivers trying to enter the business.
“It will take a substantial amount of time due to stop lights,” Barnes said. “I think it’s critical that the intersection get a real hard look. It’s going to create substantial problems.”
The intersection gets hit with heavy traffic throughout the day, Public Works Director Nikki Messenger told the council in December, and is one of the city’s biggest problem areas when it comes to congestion. The additional left turn lane is intended to take strain off Stewart Parkway.
On Monday, City Manager Lance Colley said the city’s engineer has met with property owners and will have additional plans at a later date. Those plans are about 90 percent complete.
“I’m not sure that they’re coming up with any answers that I like,” Sandfort said. “First off, I had to reach out to city to even learn about the project and the implications to the property. So that kind of rubs me the wrong way.”
“If you’re going to create a project that’s going to change the access to a business, you need to notify someone as to what’s going on,” he added. “I should have been part of the conversation a long time ago.”
Since the issue was not an agenda item, the council did not take any action or discuss it further. Staff with the Public Works Department did not return a request for comment by press time.