LISBON — Town officials hope a change in direction will bring drivers relief at a busy Lisbon intersection.

The traffic adjustment at the in intersection of Route 196 and Main Street changes right-hand dedicated turning lanes to left-turn lanes. Officials believe the switch will allow traffic to flow more freely at the intersection. Right-hand turning lanes in both directions heading toward town and to Topsham, are now travel lanes for vehicles going straight or right.

“Ninety-nine percent of the work is done,” said Public Works Director Thomas Martin, Jr. “Now it’s just watching the traffic patterns and we’ll make adjustments if we need to.”

Martin wants motorists to be aware of the change. He believes the new lane designations will prevent congestion. The installation of replacement lights and striping of the road was done overnight so it wouldn’t affect as many travelers.

The most recent Maine Department of Transportation traffic study on Route 196 shows about 14,530 cars traveled that stretch of road daily in 2017.

“It’s a much needed change,” said Martin. “That intersection in that area is scheduled to be rebuilt in 2020.”

MDOT is planning more work in the area within the next two years, including the addition of a right-hand turning lane on Main Street and the culling of parking spots.

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