Stop signs causing controversy in DRW

Lawsuit threatened; county study backs extra signs

Stop signs causing controversy

BEND, Ore. - (Update: Correcting timing of stop sign installation)

Two stop signs in Deschutes River Woods are causing controversy.

Before the Brookswood Boulevard-Murphy Road roundabout was constructed in the spring of 2015, two stop signs were installed at the three-way intersection of Brookswood and Baker Road. Residents believed they would be temporary, but Deschutes County officials decided to leave them in place afterward.

That has gotten the attention of several DRW residents who want the intersection to have just one stop sign like before.

One of the residents is threatening a lawsuit against Deschutes County if the stop signs are not taken out in the next two months. He said the county did not follow procedure.

"Once that construction was done, the detour signs and those temporary stop signs, by law, should've been taken down," resident Jim Johnson said Thursday. "They weren't."

However, Chris Doty, the Deschutes County Roads Department director, conducted a study on the intersection. He found a three-way stop was indeed appropriate, though also adding it only "marginally" meets the guidance recommendations established by the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices.

Regardless, residents of the area had other concerns about the stop signs, saying they create unnecessary traffic jams.

"You'll get like eight cars backed up, 10 cars, either direction," resident Jack Beemer said. "They have to stop, and there's no traffic movement that would (otherwise) require them to stop."

But a majority of people in subdivision south of Bend who responded to an online poll about the stop signs said they're in favor of keeping them.

"86 people responded to this original post," Deschutes River Woods Neighborhood Association President Janet Gutierrez said. "The majority of those people were in favor of keeping the stop sign. It reduces speeds. We have people out here that walk their dogs."

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