A Busy Intersection In Old Orchard Beach Could Finally Be Getting A Traffic Light
Every summer, thousands of people flock to Old Orchard Beach to get their fill of the atmosphere, the rides, the shops and of course, some pier fries. With that much traffic in and out of the small town, you may be surprised to hear that Old Orchard Beach is home to only one traffic signal. According to Saco Bay News, that could change in the coming months, as a busy Dunkin' location combined with a campground expansion may lead the town to install a second one.
For those that travel into Old Orchard Beach using I-195 off of the Maine Turnpike, you quickly approach an intersection with a Dunkin' on your left and the Old Orchard Beach Campground on your right. When the new Dunkin' was built on the corner of Smithwheel Road, Ocean Park Road was expanded to include a left-hand turning lane to avoid traffic back-ups onto the interstate. That change has worked in keeping flow going on Ocean Park, but has led to people taking dangerous and aggressive left turns out of Smithwheel Road to get back into the traffic flow, especially in the busy summer months.
To add to the potential traffic problem, Old Orchard Beach Campground is planning an expansion that will add more than 150 new sites to their blueprint. The increase in visitors to the campground will also increase the amount of left turns taken from the campground exit, leading officials to engage in the idea of a four-way traffic signal.
The Maine DOT would need to sign off on the new light being installed and won't do that until a thorough study of the intersection is done, which could take months. However, if everything is approved, OOB could have its second traffic signal right as the summertime gets hot.