BANGOR, Maine — Hoping to ease congestion on Stillwater Avenue, particularly at the intersection of the Interstate 95 on-ramp, representatives of Bangor Parkade are creating a new entrance-exit at the southernmost end of the development.
Inland US Management LLC, the new owners of the Parkade shopping mall that includes Kohl’s, Old Navy, AC Moore, L.L. Bean and other retailers, presented plans to the Bangor Planning Board on Tuesday.
The extra entrance-exit to Bangor Parkade will only allow motorists to turn right into the development or right out of the development. No left turns will be allowed, per request of City Engineer Jim Ring.
“If you introduce left turns that close to a major intersection, it would create a huge potential for accidents, not to mention delays,” Ring said Wednesday. “This [exit] will take traffic that’s headed in town from Parkade, instead of running vehicles through the big intersection.”
The idea of an alternate access point to the Parkade development was brought up in 2005, when construction began. Ring said the Maine Department of Transportation did not support a separate entrance at the time.
When the development first opened, traffic on Stillwater Avenue was a problem, but many steps have been taken to alleviate congestion.
“What has changed is the project has been in operation for some time and a lot of initial concerns have been overcome,” he said. “It’s not going to create any more traffic.”
The change will, however require some reconfiguration of parking spaces, including elimination of 13 spots within the development. Plans also call for creating a pedestrian walkway from nearby Drew Lane to the Parkade complex.
A timeline for the proposed changes has not been announced, but it’s likely that a new entrance-exit could be in place later this year.