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Officers focus on 3 areas to enforce speed, red-light-turn laws

Officers focus on 3 areas to enforce speed, red-light-turn laws

Police said officers are focusing on three areas of Madison this week to reduce traffic violations.

The Madison Police Department's traffic enforcement safety team will enforce speed limits on the eastbound Beltline Highway on Madison's west side and on the north side on Wright Street, according to a statement released Tuesday.

Officers will also be enforcing restrictions on East Washington Avenue in areas where right turns at red lights are restricted.

The special enforcement team regularly conducts targeted patrols to promote compliance with traffic laws.

Public hearing to discuss Madison Transit Service changes

Public hearing to discuss Madison Transit Service changes

Metro Transit and the City of Madison Transit and Parking Commission will hold a public hearing at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 9, according to a city of Madison press release.

The meeting will be held at the Madison Municipal Building, 215 Martin Luther King Junior Blvd., in room 260.

The hearing will discuss proposed service changes to Routes 8, 14, 15, 19, 26, 36, 44, 48, 50, 59, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74 and 78. Changes are proposed to go into effect during the last week of August.

People are encouraged to attend the public hearing to give feedback. To submit comments on the Metro changes online, visit mymetrobus.com/feedback.

City: Pothole season will be longer, not as severe

City: Pothole season will be longer, not as severe

Madison potholes will become more prevalent as the weather warms up, and the city is already racing to fill more than 15,000 of them.

The cold and the rain put stress on the roads, causing potholes to pop up all over the city.

George Dreckmann with the Madison Streets Division said the year's winter will make the season longer, but that doesn't necessarily mean more potholes.

"Because the frost went so deep this year, the thawing is going to take a little bit longer and that means the pothole season is going to spread out, but it's not going to be quite as severe," Dreckmann said.

The city will temporarily fill potholes and then finish with something more permanent in the summer. They said they'll try to fill them within 24 hours of being reported.

Next phase of Mineral Point, Junction roads construction starts this week

Next phase of Mineral Point, Junction roads construction starts this week

Another phase of construction will start at the intersection of Mineral Point and Junction roads this week.

Traffic will be shifted to one side starting Thursday depending on weather, and will likely stay that way until August, according to a release.

Eastbound and westbound drivers on Mineral Point Road will use the south side of the roadway while construction occurs on the north side, officials said. Northbound and southbound drivers on Junction Road will use the lanes on the west side of the roadway while construction occurs on the east side.

The new bridge and jug handle will stay open and operate as normal.

City officials plan to host open meetings for residents and business owners to ask questions and raise concerns on the first and third Tuesday of every month, according to the release. The meetings are at 2:30 p.m. in the job trailer located on the southwest corner of Mineral Point and Junction roads. The first meeting is scheduled for March 18.

Traffic switch, lane reductions to start on Verona Road next week

Traffic switch, lane reductions to start on Verona Road next week

The traffic switch on Verona Road between the Beltline and Raymond Road will start late next week and be complete by March 21, according to a release.

The switch will be taking place over multiple nights and will reduce southbound Verona Road traffic to two lanes starting March 20 and northbound traffic on March 21, officials said.

Starting March 21, all Verona Road traffic will be shifted to the southbound lanes between the Beltline and Raymond Road, according to the release. Two lanes will remain open to traffic in each direction.

Access to area businesses and neighborhoods will remain open during construction, officials said. Backups and delays are expected in the area, especially during peak travel times.

Gravity powers annual Pinewood Derby racers

Gravity powers annual Pinewood Derby racers

An area car dealership will be handling vehicles on a smaller scale this weekend. 

Smart Motors will host the Annual Mohawk District Pinewood Derby Sunday for the second year in a row. More than 100 Madison-area boy scouts are expected to bring their pinewood creations to the dealership on Odana Road

Kids will learn about a different form of alternative energy -- gravity -- which will power the tiny cars over the 45-foot aluminum track and show how tweaks in aerodynamics or car weight can be the difference between a first place and a sixth place finish.

When not involved in a racing heat, the kids can take "pit stops" to learn about safety topics like why they should wear seat belts, how to escape from a trunk and the devastating effects of a rollover crash. Educational tables are hosted by Dean Care Health Clinic, Safe Kids Madison Area, Boy Scouts of America, Safelight Auto Glass, Dane County Sheriff's Department and the Madison Fire Department.

Verona Road construction starts Monday

Work on the much-anticipated Verona Road project will begin Monday.

Most of the initial work will have a limited impact on traffic as crews work on traffic control lights and signage. Two weeks later, during the week of March 10, the changes will be significant.

That is when the northbound lanes of Verona Road will be closed between Raymond Road and the Beltline. North- and southbound traffic will share the southbound lanes.

By July officials hope the new northbound lanes will be completed and all traffic will be shifted there to allow construction of new southbound lanes. All work on the stretch of Verona Road between the Beltline and Raymond Road is expected to be completed by November 2014.

It is estimated that 65,000 vehicles use Verona Road each day. Providing access during construction is one of the challenges.