A stop sign for Maple & Main?

The safety of the intersection of Maple and Main streets in Waconia prompted a local group of citizens to ask the city for a stop sign to be placed at the intersection. Patriot photo by Todd Moen
The safety of the intersection of Maple and Main streets in Waconia prompted a local group of citizens to ask the city for a stop sign to be placed at the intersection. Patriot photo by Todd Moen

A number of citizens attended the Waconia City Council meeting on Monday, Aug. 6 to express their support for the placement of a stop sign at Maple and Main streets.
At this time, there is not a stop sign at that intersection, which includes the Waconia Fire Station on the southwest corner and Bob’s Repair on the northeast corner.
According to the citizens at the meeting, many of whom live near the intersection, a stop sign would provide for the safety for pedestrians in that area, which is not far from downtown Waconia and only two blocks from Bayview Elementary School.
Vincent Giesen presented a neighborhood petition that featured the signatures of 42 citizens that support moving the stop sign at Vine and Main streets to Maple and Main streets. The intersection of Vine and Main is one block to the east.
“The thing that bothers me more than anything,” Giesen said, is the fear he sees in the eyes of children trying to cross at the intersection. “They know the cars won’t stop.”
Stacy Nelson told the council that it’s important to put a stop sign at the intersection because it’s impossible to cross, especially when vehicles are parked around the fire station.
“You have to pull out into traffic to see (if you can cross),” she said, adding, “When the sun comes up, you can’t see to cross or yield to pedestrians.”
Paul Dueffert also described Maple and Main as a dangerous intersection, considering its proximity to the fire station and nearby childcare center and the hill on Main Street.
“We are concerned about out kids’ safety,” said Dueffert, who attended with his wife and three children. “The danger is inherent and in my mind, it’s a no-brainer (to install a stop sign there). It enhances the community and doesn’t hurt anyone.”
City officials thanked the citizens for their feedback and noted that certain MnDOT thresholds are necessary before a stop sign can be installed. A few years ago, a traffic study was conducted at the intersection of Maple and Main and the threshold was not met for the installation of a stop sign. However, city officials indicated a willingness to conduct another study to revisit the issue, perhaps in the fall after school has started.
Also during the meeting, the council authorized a four-year lease agreement with One Source Fitness for cardio fitness equipment at Safari Island. The city will replace 12 currently leased pieces of equipment, six 10-year-old bikes, and one 10-year-old stepper.
In addition, the city will add one additional elliptical cross trainer and a rowing machine. The equipment choices are related to the interests noted on a Safari Island user survey.
The agreement includes a parts and labor warranty good for four years.
In other matters:
• Unexpected circumstances have delayed the expected completion of the improvement project that’s underway at highways 5 and 284. According to City Administrator Susan Arntz, the project is a few weeks behind schedule and is now slated to be mostly finished around Labor Day weekend.
The delays are a result of several factors, including unexpected “unknowns” such as the odd placement of an old water main. The factors have added to the cost of the project, some of which will be covered by MnDOT and some by the city, although Arntz said any additional costs to the city are expected to relatively small.
• After serving the community as a member of the Waconia Fire Department for the past 11 years, John Uecker has offered his voluntary resignation from the department. Devin Noeldner, who applied for a position last June, will fill the vacancy.
• The city is looking for quotes for Winter Maintenance Snow Removal Contract services for the winter seasons of 2012 through 2014. City officials expect to review quotes and have the council make a decision in late September.
• Although it is too late for the primary election, city officials encouraged citizens to pre-register for the general election, which will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 6.
• The council will meet again at 6 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 20.