SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A busy Springfield street has been a source of stress for both drivers and pedestrians for years.
There were 143 crashes on St. James Avenue between 2012 and 2015. People were hurt in nearly half of those collisions.
If you live in Springfield, you’ve probably driven down St. James Avenue. It’s long, congested and known for accidents.
At the intersection of St. James Avenue and St. James Boulevard, traffic comes from four different directions.
And while there are crosswalks, there aren’t any pedestrian signals.
Several of these accidents have involved pedestrians. Back in 2016, a 16-year-old boy was killed after he was struck by a car on St. James Avenue.
And in 2015, a woman had to be rescued from a car after she collided with another vehicle.
“St. James Avenue is a major street in Springfield, but residents say there isn’t enough signage to accommodate pedestrians,” said Gladys Davis of Chicopee. “I have two middle schoolers and I still don’t allow them to take the bus to school cause I don’t trust how people drive and I’m not gonna take the chance with my kids getting hit out there.”
MassDOT wants that to change. The Department of Transportation issued safety recommendations.
First, improve driver visibility by adding taller traffic signals. Next, add “right turn only” and “left turn only” signs ahead of the intersection to minimize sudden lane changing.
And install pedestrian signals with push buttons, arrows and countdowns.
MassDOT is now calling on the city to implement these changes.