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County green lights stop signs
Trees limit vision at rural intersection

 Citing limited visibility, the Barton County Commission Monday morning approved the placement of stop signs at the intersection of NW 70 Avenue and NW 20 Road.

“It’s very blind right now,” County Engineer Barry McManaman said. “You can’t see anybody coming until you are right on it.”

The junction of the gravel roads is in Buffalo Township about seven miles northwest of Great Bend and McManaman was asked by the Road and Bridge Department to determine if signs were warranted due to the limited sight distance. “There’s a large number of trees,” he told commissioners.

After performing a study and consulting with township officials, McManaman determined the intersection warrants stop signs under the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices’ restricted sight distance condition. 

The resolution calls for two signs on NW 70 Avenue. This means northbound and southbound traffic will have to stop. 

Commissioners asked if township officials had considered cutting down the trees. However, McManaman said the trees are in several locations in the area and “it’s going to be expensive to remove them.”

However, commissioners are reticent to approve stop signs just anywhere. 

While commissioners understood the need for the stop signs, they also noted that townships should keep up with tree trimming and removal. That could prevent the high costs and, perhaps, the placement of additional signage.

The two signs will cost the county about $260, which includes the cost of the signs and the labor involved in installing them.