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Officials from the Kansas Department of Transportation and several cities along the K-10 corridor gathered in Eudora on Thursday evening to discuss how to improve roadway safety along K-10 between Lawrence and Kansas City.

Representatives from Lawrence, Eudora, De Soto, Overland Park, and Lenexa along with both the Douglas and Johnson County Sheriffs Offices attended the meeting designed to explain KDOT standards and practices for improving roadway safety and to start planning an advisory group to look at cable median barriers along the highway.

Transportation Secretary Deb Miller and Assistant Secretary Jerry Younger gave a presentation laying out all the facts and figures of how decisions are made in regards to cable median barriers and referred extensively to the report KDOT commissioned in 2008 about cable median barriers.  Younger stated at the very outset that “KDOT is not trying to make a point with all the information provided, what we are trying to show is that this is all information that has to be considered in what we decide to do on K-10.”

Younger went on to discuss the methodology and formulas used in determining how KDOT decides what the best options are to improve roadway safety.  Younger also stressed that the decision as to whether to install barriers is not strictly about money but what is the most strategic use of the money available. Younger stated that traffic volumes, median size and the average cost of various types of accidents all factor into the decision.

According to the formula in the report, traffic on K-10 would have to triple to reach the threshold KDOT uses to necessitate cable barriers and the number of accidents would also have to increase.

Officials also talked about how the rumble strip project in Douglas County will likely increase safety along the highway. Rumble strips will be installed later this year from the Douglas County line to Lawrence. Rumble strips have already been installed in the Johnson County section of K-10.

At the end of the meeting, the group agreed to form a Public Advisory Group which will consist of local officials along the K-10 corridor, county and state law enforcement agencies, KDOT officials and a select number of people form the general public. This group will look at the policies KDOT has in place, look at numbers including how many accidents have occurred along the corridor and the number of vehicles that travel the road each day.

 

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