Signs confusing to some residents

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – No left turn. Seems simple enough.

New signs for traffic turning off Central to Nims, heading into Riverside Park, have a no left turn indication. They also have a no truck sign. Some are asking if that means no trucks turning left or nobody turning left.

KSN found people turning left, because there are new left turn lanes with fresh paint, leading on Nims.

“I’m very confused, and if I were driving a truck, I would probably feel like I was in another country,” says Tony, a Wichita resident. “Because that’s very misleading.”

Some say the signs appear to show no left turn for anyone, but they turn left anyway.

“I think it’s just, people are just kind of fed up with the construction, and the fact it’s taken so long,” says Judy, who lives in the area.

Judy says the construction at Central and Nims has been ongoing for months. And, she says, she’s looking forward to a cross walk and stop lights that will soon be there.

But, she says she’s not sure the no left signs are for trucks only, or truck and all traffic.

“It’s sure a busy intersection,” says Judy. “I walk my dog, Kahlua, here around the Keeper, so I’m here a lot.”

KSN asked city engineers about the new signage. They sent city engineer Gary Janzen.

“It’s a reasonable point, it’s a good question, I do want to take a look,” says Wichita City Engineer Gary Janzen. “Even if that’s what the manual says we do, sometimes there’s other options, there’s other variations. I want to double-check and make sure this is the right thing to do here.”

Janzen says the no truck sign means no trucks. And the sign below that shows no left turn for the trucks. There are signs on both Central on both sides, showing no left and no right going onto Nims.

And, even though the signs may be confusing to some, Janzen says a lot of thought and consideration went into the placement of the signs. But, he will be open to change, if needed.

“Well, this follows industry standards. We follow the manual on uniform traffic control devices, a technical term for following industry standards on regulatory signage. And now that’s what it dictates for, no trucks can make a left turn,” says Janzen. “I will tell you I’m going to take a look at this one more time with our traffic guys and make sure, because I’m not sure that we’ve got that (new signs for no left with trucks) in too many places around the city. And if it’s something that exceeds expectations or is not normal it may not be as effective as we need it to be. So, I want to take another look at this.”

Janzen says he will be in contact with Wichita police to make sure they understand the signs are only for no trucks.

KSN will follow the story to see if signs will change. The stoplights at the intersection should be up in about a week or so.


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