Plans will continue for traffic signal at Waco and Paris Roads

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COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council approved continued plans for a proposal to improve the intersection of Waco and Paris Roads on Monday night. 

The plans include adding traffic signals and pedestrian crosswalks, as well as modifying driveways at Kraft Foods and 3M, which are located nearby.

The plan is estimated to cost $221,000 initially and the cost of yearly maintance is estimated to be $3,000. 

Councilman Ian Thomas asked if a roundabout was considered instead. 

Public Works director David Nichols said that it was considered, and it was found that a roundabout would cost nearly $1 million to build. 

MoDOT previously found more than 1,000 vehicles use the intersection every hour for six or more hours each day. 

Crash reports show that there were eight crashes at the intersection between 2011 and 2015, seven of which involved injuries. 

Kraft Foods originally proposed the idea to the city regarding its expansion and increased traffic concerns for its trucks. 

According to city council notes, "They are anticipating approximately 30 to 32 trucks per day will be accessing their plant and requested that the city work with MoDOT to improve the intersection by installing a signal and a dedicated left turn lane." 

3M and Environmental Dynamics International are also located at the intersection and are supportive of the plan. 

Construction could begin this spring.