BUCKHANNON – The City of Buckhannon’s Consolidated Public Works Board on Thursday decided to make only a section of Chancery Street a one-way road.
Currently, the entire street, which is located between the Upshur County Courthouse and courthouse annex, is one-way only.
However, with the change, Chancery Street will only be one way from the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department in the courthouse annex to Main Street. That would still stop vehicles from exiting from Chancery Street onto Main Street while allowing for two-way traffic from the sheriff’s office to Chancery’s intersection with Locust Street/Route 20.
Director of Public Works Jerry Arnold presented the idea at the board’s Thursday, Sept. 26 meeting. Arnold said the street being entirely one way has been problematic in the past.
“We’ve had certain issues, and there’s times that Main Street is closed for Strawberry Festival or car shows and the only way to access the Sheriff’s Department is coming up the wrong way,” Arnold said.
He said the situation with Chancery Street is similar to Trader’s Alley and that people have the ability to see others coming from the Sheriff’s Department and room to make way for other vehicles in a two-way traffic situation.
“Recently, there has been a resident down there in one of the apartments that has raised an issue with the Sheriff’s Department from them breaking the law essentially, by going the wrong way on a one-way street,” Arnold said.
He said the best solution is to open up the street so people can access the lot at the Sheriff’s Department in the annex via the Locust Street side.
“The spirit of that one way is the same as Trader’s Alley, which is to limit access out over the sidewalk on Main Street with vehicular traffic,” Arnold said.
Arnold explained the road would then be open to two-way traffic from the sheriff’s office to Chancery Street’s intersection with Route 20/Locust Street. The change would ensure cars still cannot exit from Chancery onto Main Street, he emphasized.
Mayor David McCauley asked Arnold if the street had enough room to accommodate two-direction traffic.
“Like I said, it’s the same thing as Trader’s Alley – you have access or areas to pull over and make room for other vehicles,” Arnold replied.
He said the street department would install a “No Thru Traffic” sign on Locust Street, at the entrance of Chancery Street and then at the back of the Sheriff’s Department they will install a sign that said, “One Way: Do Not Enter.”
Board member Mark Waldo put forth a motion to enact Arnold’s suggestion and Nancy Shobe seconded the motion, which passed.