New traffic lights to be installed at busy East Peoria intersection

By Beau Ebenezer

April 1, 2014 Updated Apr 1, 2014 at 10:30 PM CDT

EAST PEORIA, Ill. -- A new set of traffic lights will go up to keep drivers safe.

Last week, the East Peoria City council voted 4-1 in favor of permanent traffic signals at the corner of Mueller Road and Pinecrest Drive.

Tuesday night, the council accepted a low bid to install these signals.

City officials said I-DOT recommended the traffic lights because of increased traffic from I-74 construction.

"This is warranted for the speed and the safety," said East Peoria Commissioner, Daniel Decker. "This is a dangerous intersection now, and hopefully, a signalized intersection will be able to control that."

"Some council members view it as a way to get a traffic light for 50 cents on the dollar of what we would normally pay," said East Peoria Commissioner, Chad Joos. "That is a valid opinion, but I am of the opinion that if it is not warranted, I would rather spend zero dollars."

The project will cost more than $70,000.

The state will pay half of that cost.

City officials said the signals will be installed in the coming weeks.

The council also accepted an ordinance to refinance $19 million in bonds, which would save them $1 million over the next 16 years.

And as their budget deadline nears closer, the city is looking to add two new employees to their public works department.

They hope to add one mechanic and one streets employee.

It is the first time they have added personnel to public works since 1979.

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