Intersection of Airways, West Lafayette stays closed

JACKSON, Tenn. —¬†An intersection has been closed downtown for a few months now and viewers are wondering why.

A decision was made last year to close off an intersection between Airways Boulevard and West Lafayette Street.

Mayor Scott Conger said that this form of tactical urbanism would make this area safer for residents to walk to and from different shops, the Amp, and the Farmers Market.

We spoke with businesses located on the street to get their thoughts on it being opened or staying closed.

“Saturdays are very busy with the Farmers Market. So with pedestrians walking constantly, I think for the overall safety, it’ll just be really good. Especially with Starbucks coming this area, is gonna really, really, really see high traffic. So just closing one side of the street down for pedestrians I think will be a great thing,” said Briyona Batchelor, the owner of Lamont’s Kitchen.

Jackson’s city engineer, Tom Wolf, says it was closed to help keep both vehicles and pedestrians safe.

“The main reason for closure on that intersection was just the layout of the intersection itself. If you take Main Street, Airways, and West Lafayette and you bring them into that point, we created a Y-intersection westbound on Lafayette. You really had to crank your head left to make sure you have a clear and safe space to get out into the intersection. Y-intersections are heavily frowned upon. However, they were popular years ago,” Wolf said.

Wolf went on to explain what the future plans are for the intersection.

“The decision was made several months back. I can’t tell you specifically when it was, but the decision was to keep it closed because we did get some positive feedback for it. It did give us quite a bit of additional parking for the marketplace there. I’ve noticed we did get much more pedestrian traffic. And we eliminated any chance, or at least I feel we have eliminated any chances of, a really bad accident at that Y-intersection,” Wolf said.

He says that with new developments, they are waiting to see what the final look of that intersection will be.

The intersections has been closed since July of last year.

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