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Town to remove controversial ‘No Turn On Red’ sign

Callers to farragutpress presstalk alerted Town staff to traffic problems at the newly renovated Peterson Road and Kingston Pike intersection.

Presstalk callers and writers complained about a “No Turn on Red” sign for northbound drivers on Peterson Road trying to turn right onto Kingston Pike.

Darryl Smith, Town engineer, said the problem was an oversight.

“That’s on the wrong side. It’s supposed to be coming out of Ingles,” Smith said.

Smith and Alan Childers, of Cannon & Cannon, plan to not only move the sign, but to change it to a “Turning Vehicles Must Yield to Pedestrians” sign.

“One of the planning commissioners, during the discussion of the signal, had a concern that folks don’t yield to pedestrians,” Smith said.

“[The sign] was intended to stop vehicles from gliding across the crosswalk,” he added.

“The fact is, we have crosswalks all over Town where we don’t force people to stop. You’re supposed to yield anyway,” Smith said.

Another noticeable oversight includes no clear thru traffic lane from Peterson to the new Ingles entrance; there are only right turn and left turn lanes.

“The left lane is supposed to be thru and left if you’re heading northbound,” Smith said.

He added the error was likely the result of previous striping at the intersection. Before Peterson Road had a signal, motorists could only turn left or right.

“We’re still making some adjustments out there, and that has … just been overlooked,” Smith said.

“Anytime we put in a signal, we’ve always got adjustments to make,” he added, asking Farragut residents to notify the Town of problems they identify.

“I appreciate being alerted [by farragutpress] to it,” Smith said, adding improvements will be made quickly in coming days.

Smith said the sidewalks at the Peterson-Kingston Pike intersection also will be examined to make pedestrian crossings shorter.

“We’re going to be making some adjustments to the sidewalks out there, to get a better pedestrian crossing on Kingston Pike. It’s such a long crossing,” Smith


Smith also addressed the number of traffic lights along Kingston Pike between West End Avenue and Campbell Station Road, another presstalk sore spot.

“All of those signals are warranted … they should all be there,” he said.

Smith added no traffic lights will be removed or moved when the Town’s planned automated enforcement cameras are installed.

Smith, Knox County Sheriff’s Capt. Ben Harkins and Associate Town Administrator Gary Palmer still are discussing the camera contract with Redflex.

“My feeling is, if we can affect a change, people are most likely going to be more alert when they get to these other signals,” Smith said.

“What has happened in most cities where they bring in red light cameras is it affects people’s driving habits even at signals where they’re not monitored. I would expect that to happen here,” he added.

The intersections to gain red light cameras are Smith Road and Kingston Pike, Campbell Station Road and Kingston Pike, Campbell Station at Grigsby Chapel/Parkside Drive and Kingston Pike at Concord Road.


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