Four-way stop recommended for Front/Hampshire with caveat
2 months, 3 weeks ago by Bryan Nichols
Building owner says a national restaurant/bar franchise requires the stop to commit to the project
A new restaurant/bar franchise may be coming to Quincy but first they say they need a four way stop in front of their possible location.
Duane Venvertloh owns the building at the corner of Front and Hampshire in Quincy that most recently housed Jonny Bang Bangs. Venvertloh says he has a franchisor, that he can’t name due to a non-disclosure agreement, who is interested in the building. However, they have requested a four way stop be placed at the intersection in front of the building for the safety of patrons crossing the street.
The Quincy Traffic Commission met in a special meeting last night to take up the matter.
City Engineer Jeff Steinkamp said there is specific criteria that is supposed to be met to warrant a four way
"We look at traffic studies, pedestrian count, accident rate, speed, any obstructions, things of that nature," Steinkamp said.
Traffic commission members expressed concern that the intersection didn't meet those requirements, specifically with no business in place.
Currently, Front Street sees 1,450 cars per day. 800 vehicles were recorded on Hampshire St. No accidents have been recorded since 2009.
For a four-way stop, city criteria suggests that 300 vehicles pass through the intersection per hour.
Commission members noted that there were no pedestrian crossing issues during the time the building was used as a nightclub.
However, Venvertloh did provide more details to the Commission about the potential tenant in an effort to alleviate concerns that a four-way stop wasn't justified.
He said the business is a national bar/restaurant franchise.
"A normal franchise would have 500-600 patrons a day and 75-100 employees a day," Venvertloh said.
Venvertloh said the franchisor wouldn't move forward if the four-way stop wasn't put in place.
Though the intersection didn’t completely meet the criteria, the commission weighed the possible economic effects if the business did build.
Commission member Paul Holtschlag said he didn't typically like to approve a four-way stop where it wasn't warranted.
"...but I'm also a person that likes to promote economic growth in Quincy. We know it's not gonna meet the traffic count, we know it's not gonna meet the visibility issue, but if we can bring an employer to town who is gonna employee at least 75 people and generate sales tax revenue and revenue in other ways...that is an aspect that we have to consider."
The commission decided to recommend the measure with a caveat that said the franchise will have to negotiate a time with the city to put in the stop after they have moved farther along in the project. Venvertloh says build out time, if the project moves forward, is expected to take three to four months.
The full city council still has to rule on the measure.
EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this story had the daily Front Street traffic count wrong. We regret the error.