The Old Dubuque Road intersection will be closed as of Aug. 3.
In order to increase public awareness of the impending closure, the Iowa Department of Transportation erected signs along Highway 151, both north and southbound.
Once the closure of the intersection begins, three signs stating no right turn or no left turn will be placed along Highway 151. Road closed warning signs will be placed both on Old Dubuque Road and 130th Street informing traffic that the road is closed. Road closed signs will also be placed in the right turn lane southbound on Highway 151, both at the beginning and end of the turn lane.
The barrier used at the intersection will no longer be a gate but chained together barriers. Jones County Engineer Derek Snead said the gate that had been previously discussed was not advantageous, given the situation.
“It’s made to run more parallel to the roadway. When you run more perpendicular to the roadway, you run into issues with the shape of the road,” he said.
In addition to the roadway being crowned, the gate that was previously discussed was larger than suited the road. The time it would take to open the gate was also seen as an issue.
Road closed barriers will then be chained together in an arrow formation on Old Dubuque Road as drivers approach the former intersection just past the driveways from the final residences along the road.
The closure of the road was approved by both the Jones County Supervisors and the Anamosa City Council, who control the road. Plans are underway for the construction of an overpass between Old Dubuque Road and Circle drive, including the construction of the roundabout to connect the overpass to Old Dubuque Road and Circle Drive.
The conversation about the closure of the intersection started back up after a fatal accident Jones County Deputy Treasurer Shelli Gray Nov. 5. The intersection previously produced fatal accidents in 2008 and 2012 and public meetings had previously been held in 2009 by the Iowa Department of Transportation.
The recommendation to close the intersection, one of the most dangerous in the state, was made by the safety committee made up of city, county and DOT officials created to examine the best way to deal with the intersection. The committee was formed after a public forum on the intersection in January.