WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY)– If you’ve ever driven down that narrow part of Market Street in Wilmington you know it may be a four lane road but it sure doesn’t feel like one.
That may be changing though thanks in part to a group of concerned neighbors.
“Right now it is not safe,” said Charlie Blanton, President of CPAPA, “So basically people are white knuckling it down the street.”
It feels like it’s not for the faint of heart. The four lane part of Market St. in Wilmington.
“This is about protecting people, “he said, “keeping this neighborhood safe.”
Blanton saying wreck after wreck, enough is enough.
“This is very important right now, as it affects the lives of everyone who drives through,” said Blanton.
The group has organized petition with a plan to take the road back to two lanes. A move that would make the road wider and in their view safer.
Traffic engineers with the City of Wilmington have said that taking the road back to 2 lanes shouldn’t be done until Independence Blvd. connects with M.L.K. Pkwy.
“The problem is that’s unfunded and may not be finished til’ 2030 or 2040,” said Blanton.
We took their concerns to Mayor Bill Saffo. He says making Market two laned there is worth a shot.
“I would be willing to try that for one month just to see what the traffic patterns would look like in that part of Market Street by reducing those lanes from 4 to 2,” said Saffo, “I mean we may all be very surprised that there may be very little impact.”
Blanton wants it done right saying the sinage should, “Tell commuters and travelers way up the road so that they have a chance to avoid the narrow area if they want too.”
But feels confident it’s a road worth traveling.
Mayor Bill Saffo didn’t say when exactly he planned to ask city employees to implement these changes.