Local News

Apex Residents: Half Light is 'Half-Baked Idea'

Posted August 11, 2007

— The Department of Transportation installed a half light at an Apex intersection to control traffic, but residents call the measure "a half-baked idea."

The DOT installed the half light to relieve congestion at the intersection of U.S. Highway 64 and Kelly Road. Traffic lights are strung across half the intersection, while the other half is left as open highway.

The DOT has not previously used a half light in the Triangle highway district, officials said.

The attempt at traffic control upset motorists and drew an official complaint from the town government.

"What we're ending up with here is this half-baked idea of a traffic light, called a half light," Ann Mullins, an Apex resident, said.

Drivers in a left turn lane are confused by whether the light - a solid green - means they should go through the intersection or wait for passing traffic, Mullins said.

"People aren't used to stopping on just one side. (They wonder) are they going to stop? Are they not? Can I make a left turn safely?" Mullins said.

"I just think it creates more anxiety than it solves a problem," Mullins continued.

The town received so many complaints from motorists that it complained to the DOT.

"Actually, our police department went out and asked for the signal to be turned off, because it was creating so much confusion," Kent Jackson, director of Apex's Construction Management Department, said.

The DOT denied that request but said engineers would study the half light intersection. They may modify the signal timing and make some adjustments to the intersection, DOT officials said.

"We feel it's an incomplete solution. I think in trying to do something good DOT may have created a confusing situation," Jackson said.

Residents said they're unsatisfied by the DOT"s plan to keep up the half light.

"There's going to be a fatality out here, and it's just because people are unsure," Mullins said. "That's my message."


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  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc Aug 13, 2007

    From another WRAL story under today's newsbriefs section:
    "Apex — Eleven people were injured Sunday evening in a three-vehicle accident in Apex.

    The accident happened at Old Raleigh Road and Apex Peakway, according to police.

    Most of the injuries were minor, but two people were sent to Western Wake Medical Center with serious injuries, authorities said.

    Charges are pending against one of the drivers, but officials have not released the names of those involved in the accident."

    We'll probably find that the driver at fault was confused by the STOP SIGN at this intersection. And wasn't sure who had the right of way! :P

  • fl2nc2ca2md2nc Aug 13, 2007

    " It is firmly my opinion that the opponents of this light just have nothing better to whine about."

    I think you hit the nail on the head, shiftat13

  • HadEnough Aug 13, 2007

    Just another example of the DOT over-controlling traffic. People must assume responsibility for their driving and not rely on DOT to keep everyone safe all the time.

  • LambeauSouth Aug 13, 2007

    Hi cryinshame,
    you wrote half light , for the halfwits of cary
    maybe this is why you are having such a difficult time
    with the obvious. Duh ??? You must be from Apex

  • caniacfan Aug 13, 2007

    I did see another light on 64 the other day that I really like. I believe it was at 64 and 751. The arrow for a left turn flashes yellow while it is on. I've never seen that before, but it should automatically let a driver know they have to yield when making their turn. Wonder how effective it is versus a solid green in the turn lane?

  • RainierBeer Aug 13, 2007

    Amen Joe. 99 percent of our state government is screwed up.

  • Joe Aug 13, 2007

    It's more like half baked than half light.

    Anyone with half a brain can tell that this half light idea will cause accidents. DOT is mentally retarded to say they need to make a study before making any corrections. What a disaster DOT is!

  • Professor Studley Aug 13, 2007

    "A simple $5 YIELD sign and a $2 pole would do the job and be less confusing to everyone."

    Someone please explain how a yeild sign will stop oncoming traffic to clear the left turn lane in question?

  • Professor Studley Aug 13, 2007

    "The intersection light at Ten Ten Road and the US 1 exit is the same way."

    The intersrction on Capital Blvd. in front of the drive the the outback resturant is a similar ideal... Been there for many years, however there are only protected left turn lanes. Same concept with a green yeild, like the hundreds of others at "standard" grade intersection. (btw, the little white signs to the left of the light EXPAINS HOW IT IS TO BE USED! Signs are not on our road for they asthetic value... Read them.) It is firmly my opinion that the opponents of this light just have nothing better to whine about.

  • rmd Aug 13, 2007

    I live near this area. This light is a good idea. Traffic would get backed up for turning left on to Kelly, but there is no need to stop the 64 west bound lane.