FARMINGTON — The Maine Department of Transportation is recommending a change from four to three lanes on Routes 2 and 4 from the hospital to Oakes Street.

Proposed to address safety issues, the change would include a two-way road with left turning lane in the middle of the highway, also known as Wilton Road.

A public meeting is planned for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 17, at the Farmington Community Center, Town Manager Richard Davis said.

Results of the Wilton Road safety study will be presented, and the public will be given an opportunity to voice their opinions.

During a February meeting of the town’s Transportation Advisory Committee, Maine Department of Transportation traffic engineer Dennis Emidy reported results of a three-year safety study started in 2011. 

The data was compiled and recently completed, Davis said.


Results showed a total of 158 crashes in the 2.83-mile section during the three years, according to the meeting minutes. The road has five lanes from the hospital to Wal-Mart and four lanes from Wal-Mart to Bridge Street.

Many of the accidents were caused by differences in speeds between vehicles and frequent and sudden lane changes, he said during the presentation.

Vehicles entering driveways along the four-lane section accounted for nearly 50 percent of injuries, according to the study. The cost of the injuries was reported at $2.6 million over the three years.

The study indicates the change to a two-way road with a left-turn lane could reduce crashes by up to 47 percent.

According to the presentation, a vehicle traveling north from the hospital to Bridge Street would take 4 minutes and 59 seconds at an average speed of 36 mph if the road is converted to three lanes. On the four-lane road, travel time is 4 minutes and 39 seconds at an average speed of 38 mph.

Travel time south from Oakes Street to the hospital would take 6 seconds longer at an average speed 1 mph less than the current average of 37 mph.


The traffic count has actually gone down to 16,670 per day in the busiest area between Knowlton Corner and KFC, Davis said.

Other places where similar lane changes were made include Route 4 in Turner, Route 26 in Paris and Main Street in Waterville.

MDOT representatives also discussed plans for work on the road. An overlay was originally planned but now they are considering a “mill and fill” for 2016 or 2017, depending on what state funding is available. Mill and fill consists of  grinding out the old pavement to a depth of 2 inches or so and repaving, Davis said.

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