When Orem High School opens the 1988-89 school year at the end of August, students driving from parts of north Orem may find they're arriving a little earlier than usual, thanks to the Utah Department of Transportation.
According in Kevin Beckstrom, UDOT public information officer, safety concerns and an increase in traffic have made it necessary to put a new traffic light at Eighth North and Fourth East in Orem."This stoplight will also help cross traffic. Right now it is a real hassle to get across Eighth North," Beckstrom said.
Since the beginning of the year, UDOT has installed three traffic signals along Eighth North (U-52), between I-15 and the entrance to Provo Canyon.
The Fourth East intersection and the area just east and west of it have had numerous traffic accidents and a high level of personal injury reports, according to Orem Police statistics.
During the school year, traffic trying to cross Eighth North on Fourth East has had a terrible time, Beckstrom said. The new stoplight will help alleviate that problem and also help regulate traffic along Eighth North.
"These stoplights are part of a packaged contract UDOT has with Utah and Wasatch counties," Beckstrom said.
Each light costs between $40,000 and $70,000 (the one being installed at Fourth East costs $50,000). It takes about 20 working days to pour the footings, install the lights and set the timers making it ready just in time for school, Beckstrom said.
Drivers going to Orem High School, 175 S. Fourth East, and Sharon Elementary, 524 N. Fourth East, will likely feel the effects of the new stoplight. It will also slow down drivers along the Eighth North corridor, Beckstrom said.