KDH needs a traffic signal, but money is a problem

By on August 15, 2019

The N.C. Department of Transportation (NCDOT) has determined the need for a traffic signal at the congested Kill Devil Hills intersection of Lake Drive and U.S. 158. But state transportation officials acknowledge they aren’t sure when and how they can secure the estimated $200,000 needed to fund the project.

At the request of the Kill Devil Hills Board of Commissioners several months ago, NCDOT conducted traffic studies at the intersection. Allen Moran, Division 1 representative on the state’s Board of Transportation, told the Voice that traffic volume data met the threshold for a such a stoplight.

The hold-up on the project, he noted, is that there haven’t been enough accidents at the intersection to qualify the project for Spot Safety Program funds, monies designated for specific safety projects that provide the most benefit in terms of reducing injuries, fatalities, and motor vehicle crashes.

Speaking of the NCDOT study during the Aug. 12 Kill Devil Hills Commissioners meeting, Commissioner Terry Gray said: “The good news is that traffic numbers did support putting a light there. The bad news is that they don’t have any money.”

Moran acknowledged the uncertainty over funding, noting that, “The question is where the money is going to come from. That’s not to say we won’t pay for it.” He said that with the department’s strict funding formula, the project likely wouldn’t score well, adding that it is still exploring alternative funding sources to pay for the stoplight.

The west side of Lake Drive lies in the municipality’s light industrial zone and houses a number of warehouses and other businesses that generate larger vehicles and significant congestion. Several businesses also sit at the intersection at milepost 9, including Country Deli, Buffalo City Jug Shop and Ladles Soups.

“We have a couple dangerous intersections, and that is a real dangerous intersection with a lot of heavy traffic as far as trucks and tractor trailers that come out of there,” asserted Gray at the Aug. 12 meeting.

Gray also noted that bicycle safety was a concern at the Lake Drive intersection, as well as along the sidewalks adjacent to U.S. 158 in Kill Devil Hills whose outlets turn toward the bypass. “Recently we had a bicycle get hit at that intersection,” he said. “The bicyclists who are using them, some aren’t familiar and come down the sidewalk and turn right toward the bypass.”

Gray said that adding that bike stop signs would increase safety and asked Town Manager Debbie Diaz to investigate the possibility.   He also commended NCDOT for “working very hard to come up with a solution.”


Recent posts in this category

Recent posts in this category


  • Greg

    Ncdot’s budget has been hammered The Gop majority in the NCGA is negligent in Highway maintenance. They doubled all DMV fees and instituted a sales tax on auto repair labor. That tax also applies to almost all labor. The marking on the roads is marginal at best

    Thursday, Aug 15 @ 6:05 pm
  • Kim

    Oh, Dare County can’t come up with that???? I mean it is the the richest county in NC!! Very sad!!!

    Thursday, Aug 15 @ 7:06 pm
  • Jon

    You would be amazed at how much money goes into just keeping up with the roads in place as is with the ever changing landscape. Maybe kdh could spend less on their cop cars yearly they spend a enormous amount of cop cruisers. Newer faster cop cars are not needed in a few short years they would be able to save this alone.

    Monday, Aug 19 @ 10:51 am
  • surf123

    How about taking it back from the Tourism Board who is supposed to help offset the impact of tourism and this is one of the many impacts. There is plenty of money to go around in Dare County, but the issue is spending problem.

    Friday, Aug 16 @ 7:44 am
  • DieselDave

    It’s called a Grant…maybe you’ll show up to one of the public board meetings and request said money? Yeah, thought not… go back to your hole.

    Friday, Aug 16 @ 11:28 am
  • surf123

    I don’t care about the stoplight, but do care about the Tourism Board spending money to bring more people here when the money could be spent on improvements like this that help everyone.

    Friday, Aug 16 @ 5:10 pm
  • Matthew Byrne

    Connect Bell Ave to Pond Street.

    Connect the back ends of Eighth and Fresh Pond and utilize the existing lights at Eighth and Ocean Acres.

    No Left Turns on Lake and Fresh Pond out onto the By-Pass from the East or West side.

    Contact the NC DOT and have the lights from Adams Lane through Neptune put in SEQUENCE…

    Friday, Aug 16 @ 8:08 am
  • Jme

    Yeah good idea

    Saturday, Aug 17 @ 7:18 am
  • DieselDave

    Record visitor spending in 2018 (1.2 billion in Dare alone) and Dare can’t afford a traffic light? Right…

    Friday, Aug 16 @ 11:21 am
  • Steve

    The problem(s) is/are too many people.. Our future our lives and our economy would benefit from less population during the summer.

    Saturday, Aug 17 @ 8:22 am
  • Moved here from south of the Mason Dixon line

    now that the need for this light has been established by NCDOT & KDH I would think any future injuries at this intersection would be prime targets for litigation. NCDOT & KDH are you listening?

    Saturday, Aug 17 @ 9:59 am
  • Russel kissel

    The last thing kdh needs is another light. I’ve lived here all my life and can’t say I’ve ever seen a wreck there . light would only be needed for three months out of the year I can think of better things to do with 200grand. Traffic lights cause congestion not fix it look at kitty hawk very few lights very little traffic ll

    Monday, Aug 19 @ 8:26 am
  • Frank Moore

    Ok apparently $200,000 is to much to pay to find the funds to prevent injury or death or property damage as the result of not installing a traffic light at this intersection that has been determined to need one very badly. It would seem to me that public safety would have the trump card over other “like to have projects” as opposed as this “have to have project”. What is serious injury or death worth to this Town Council ? Get real Council members a good defense lawyer would have a field day with you if a person is injured, killed or even property damage due to not having this traffic control device installed after the studies and your acknowledgement that a traffic light is badly needed at this very busy intersection. How well will you sleep if death or serious injury occurs as a result of you not aggressively correcting this situation. Think out of the box for the solution rather than your standard answer and response of, something like “oh me”.

    Saturday, Aug 17 @ 1:28 pm
  • John

    Would Traffic Circles, AKA, Roundabouts be useful on Route 158?

    Monday, Aug 19 @ 8:32 am
  • Russ Blair

    ‘Gray said that adding that bike stop signs would increase safety’
    While I’m trying to have bike stop signs removed because no one stops at them they are trying to add more? I’ve talk to multiple police officers about the bike stop signs and they say they are not real stop signs they are just suggestions. They say they will not enforce them that they have enough work to do paying attention to the cars.

    Monday, Aug 19 @ 9:04 am