Posted 10:30 PM 10/21/2013 : Indirect left turn at Grant and Oracle takes effect
TUCSON - An indirect left turn, have you made one yet? They've been installed at two major intersections in Tucson, Ina and Oracle on the northwest side, it's been operating for a few weeks now. And starting Tuesday morning at six, Grant and Oracle. Drivers wanting to make a left hand turn on Grant will now go through the intersection, make a U turn, than a right at the light. They're known as indirect left turns, or Michigan lefts. Motorists have mixed opinions about their use in Tucson. Sandy Chambers says "I don't like it. If you're going to turn left you should turn left." It's confused me so much, that I'm turning into the medical center, I did it today, then I had to U Turn and go back," says another driver, "So it's part of learning." George Seils says, "I think it's the most idiotic thing ever invented, why would we take advice from Michigan?" As drivers steered through months of construction, some businesses felt the impact. At Casas Adobes Plaza where the indirect left turn has been in effect for about a month, some shops say they continue to lose business. They say customers are having trouble accessing their parking lot. While sales reps at other businesses say their clientele stayed loyal, keeping sales up. Robin Jelks says, "They'll find a way to come to the plaza no matter what, so we're lucky to have a good loyal following." Her co-worker Bianca Yanez adds, "They complain a little bit here and there, but they're still coming to the plaza, which is good." Change isn't easy, but the city hopes drivers will see the long-term value of indirect left turns; reducing wait time at intersections by 42% and injury crashes by 30%. "It will take some getting used to, but I think it's good," says a driver, "The traffic was backed up, for gosh, 60 cars. So it's okay, I'll live with it." The project at Grant and Oracle was behind schedule by one month.
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