Although this truck began turning right from Redbud onto N. Henry Clay as close to the curb as possible, it was forced to make a turn so wide that it crossed the median and into the oncoming northbound lane

By: Tara Blue
Local business and property owners recently voiced concerns to the Ashland Board of Alderman about an ongoing traffic issue they say occurs on Redbud Lane.

Dave Westhoff of Boone Corner spoke at the April 2nd meeting, stating that he has complied with the city’s recent request for him to mitigate muddy runoff that was flowing from the property onto Redbud. Westhoff laid sod, widened the entrance on N. Henry Clay, and added decorative boulders, which he says has largely solved the runoff issue. However, he says that if the city wants the area to retain a pleasant appearance, a change must be made to the traffic flow.

Westhoff described how many drivers are using Redbud as a two-way street when it is technically an alley, so when vehicles come from different directions, the drivers must pull off to the sides to pass each other. Westhoff says this is causing ruts and damages to the new landscaping. He added that Redbud is only 14 feet wide and does not meet the minimum required width to function as a two-way street.

Jean Selby of the Hair Studio also voiced a concern that when drivers turn left onto Redbud from North Henry Clay, they must wait if there is already a vehicle on Redbud because both vehicles do not fit at the same time. Selby says this causes traffic to stop until the vehicle on Redbud pulls out onto N. Henry Clay, causing an inconvenience for customers
who have scheduled appointment times.

A truck turning west onto Redbud from N. Henry Clay was forced to divert and cross the southbound on-coming lane when the driver of the truck noticed a car already traveling on Redbud

Westhoff says this is also problematic because vehicles turning from Redbud onto N. Henry Clay must make such a dangerous wide turn due to the location of the utility pole that it causes them to cross over the median into the oncoming lane.

Both Westhoff and Selby requested the city designate and enforce Redbud as a one-way. They say this is the most feasible option and would allow for safer access to the businesses in that area. Westhoff says he spoke to several nearby residents on Redbud and they are in agreement. He also said the Post Office needs the traffic to flow from the east to the west for their operations.

Ashland Public Works Director James Creel says the city is looking into the matter and has hired an engineering firm to conduct a traffic study on Redbud from N. Henry Clay to N. Main Street. Creel says the firm will also study Burnam Ave. and the 200 block of S. College St. due to the narrow widths of these streets, along with additional concerns from residents and business owners.