The town of Cumberland is considering adding two stop signs on Tuttle Road at Middle Road. Contributed / MDOT

The Cumberland Town Council will hold a public hearing next week about adding two more stop signs at the intersection of Tuttle and Middle roads to make it a four-way stop.

Vehicles on Middle Road now must stop at Tuttle Road, but there are no stop signs for drivers on Tuttle Road. Since 2010 there have been 29 crashes at the intersection, according to the Maine Department of Transportation, which presented the four-way stop plan at a neighborhood meeting Monday.

“Generally speaking, I believe most residents understand and appreciate the need to limit the number and severity of crashes at that intersection,” Town Council Vice Chairperson Mark Segrist told The Forecaster.

Some residents at the meeting, however, said they were concerned about how additional stop signs might affect the flow of traffic and the potential for traffic backups leading up the hill toward Cumberland Center or over the I-295 bridge, Segrist said.

“These are all issues that need to be explored with MDOT prior to any official decision being made,” he said.

“Additional questions related to improving the stops on Middle Road first before adding stops on Tuttle need to be answered” as well, he said.

While other possible solutions were considered, including a traffic light, research showed that a four-way stop would significantly reduce crashes, reduce injury crash severity and provide the highest safety benefit to cost ratio, according to MDOT.

About 35 residents attended the meeting, Town Manager Bill Shane said.

The Town Council’s public hearing will be held Monday, Aug. 14. The council will not take any action on the four-way stop until at least Aug. 28, Shane said.

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