Business owners on Putnam Avenue are banding together to fight for their stoplights.
A survey done by the Ohio Department of Transportation is recommending taking down the stop lights at either Pierce Street or Harrison Street on Putnam Avenue. Now it is up to the city to make a decision and business owners are up in arms about the stop lights being removed.
"It is going to be a racetrack and of course the city engineer said ‘well that is an enforcement issue’, well that is just to me they are passing the buck," says Dan Quinn.
Quinn owns the Sunshine Shoppe on the corner of Putnam Avenue and Harrison Street and says his business will suffer if the traffic light is removed.
"You know our customers and stuff that come into our shop say you know these lights need to be here, how are they going to turn in and out of these side streets. We just don’t understand it," says Quinn.
WHIZ spoke with Zanesville’s Public Safety Director, Bob Branford, who says the traffic committee is leaning toward removing only the stoplight at Pierce Street. But the pastor of the First United Methodist Church located on that corner says that will cause a serious safety issue for people visiting the Free Store food bank.
"We also have a lot of walkers that come to our free store, people who are pushing strollers or in electric wheelchairs and they need the traffic lights to slow the traffic, have it come to a stop, so that they can safely get across the road," says Joy French, the pastor.
Quinn and French both say they believe the street lights are being taken down to save money for the city and have hundreds of names on a petition to keep the stop lights. Branford says it is not an issue of cost, but having unnecessary traffic signals. He says if people have concerns regarding the stop light, they can send an email to PubSaf@coz.org.
Quinn is holding a meeting Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church on Putnam Avenue. He says he is inviting city officials and the public to the meeting to discuss the traffic light.