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ALTON - The Alton Committee of the Whole gave their preliminary approval of two traffic safety related resolutions on Monday, including the installation of new crosswalks and stop signs at two intersections in the city.

A resolution allowing the Public Works Department to install crosswalks across Alby Street at the intersections with East 5th Street and East 6th Street passed unanimously following explanations from Alderwoman Betsy Allen and Alton Police Chief Jarrett Ford.

Allen said the intersection is near the Salvation Army and Crisis Food Center, and has been seeing a lot more pedestrian traffic lately. Chief Ford added some of those pedestrians are children coming from a school being run out of a nearby church building.

“There's an alternative school that is housed out of that church now, and those children walk to the Salvation Army …throughout the week at various times,” Ford said. “There’s no crosswalks to cross the street, so that’s the purpose for the crosswalks there.”

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A separate resolution calling for stop signs to be placed on northbound and southbound Henry Street at East 15th Street also passed unanimously. Ford said a traffic study found stop signs were the best means of improving traffic safety given the conditions of the area.

“A traffic study was done. I know we had first taken this up over a year ago, we tried some other alternative measures to help, and it didn’t seem to do much good, so that led to the study,” Ford said. “What the traffic study did discover is that when you come up Henry Street, it’s at a hill and you can't necessarily see what's up there, so for safety reasons, that’s why we agreed to recommend this one.”

The new stop signs will turn the intersection into a four-way stop. Alderman Raymond Strebel added the birth of a newborn child has raised the total number of children within a two-block vicinity of the intersection to 25, underscoring the need for more traffic safety improvements in the neighborhood.

Both items now go to the Alton City Council at their next meeting this Wednesday, May 22 at 6:30 p.m. Alderwoman Rosetta Brown and Alderman John Meehan were absent from the May 20, 2024, Committee of the Whole meeting.

All Alton City Council meetings can be watched live on the Riverbender.com Facebook page or website, or on demand with your smart TV on theRiverbender.com ROKU channel and on theRiverbender.com YouTube channel.

A full recording of the May 20, 2024, Alton Committee of the Whole meeting is available at the top of this story, on the Riverbender.com Facebook page, or on Riverbender.com/video.

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