Brookford Drive, a bottleneck on the way to and from Toledo Christian School, could get a turn lane soon.
But when city workers started work on the lane by cutting down trees along Brookford at River Road, residents were alarmed.
At the request of Councilman Rob Ludeman, the work has been halted temporarily. Mr. Ludeman said he is trying to schedule a public meeting so plans for the new turning lane on Brookford can be explained to the public.
“None of us knew they were going to do this work,” Mr. Ludeman said.
David Moebius, commissioner of engineering services, said the city has had a plan for more than a year to add a right-turn lane to Brookford.
Such a lane would speed up traffic turning off Brookford onto River Road.
He said three trees were cut down by the city's forestry division at the request of his division to make room for the lane. He said that, unfortunately, the work was done before the citizens were notified. Normally, area residents are alerted about a coming project once the contract is let. The project is expected to cost about $83,000 and has been put out to bid, but has not been awarded yet, he said.
“I would prefer to do it this year if in fact everybody would like the project to go forward,” Mr. Moebius said.
The new lane would ease traffic on Brookford, a residential street which is the only access to Toledo Christian. The street is so busy in the mornings and afternoons on school days that residents are prohibited from parking on the street at those times.
Mr. Ludeman said a new turn lane on Brookford would help. However, he has been urging a different approach - a turn-off from the Anthony Wayne Trail onto Brookford.
“[A Brookford turn lane] is not the solution which everybody wants, which is the access from Anthony Wayne Trail,” he said.
He said under his proposal, motorists would have access to Toledo Christian and possibly to Our Lady of Perpetual Help School, but no through-traffic would be permitted.
Former Mayor Carty Finkbeiner was adamantly opposed to the plan, Mr. Ludeman said. He wrote to Mayor Jack Ford earlier this year renewing his suggestion. Mr. Ford referred the recommendation to the Ohio Department of Transportation, which turned it down.
Robert Reinbolt, director of the city's Department of Public Service, said Toledo Christian doesn't have enough frontage along the Trail for deceleration and acceleration lanes, and he said ODOT is resistant to allowing new entrances and exits from the Trail.