Signals Operating at Dangerous 176 Intersection in Crystal Lake

A June 14, 2009, accident at the intersection of Route 176 and Briarwood Drive next to the Sunset Park sign. Click to enlarge.

Re-configuring the dangerous Route 176 and Briarwood Drive intersection has been going on since at least April.

In April old growth trees were chopped down to make way for asphalt and drainage for the highway improvement.

With the amount of traffic headed across Route 176 to get to Woodstock or McHenry County College by the back way, it’s a wonder there were not more T-bone crashes by speeding cars on 176.

“Be prepared to stop,” says the first sign. Unneeded, since there has been a stop sign at the intersection with Route 176 at least fifty years. But some sign company made some money,

This is the intersection that was ignored by the traffic folks who advised McHenry County College what improvements would be needed to put a minor league baseball stadium right across Route 14 from Lucas Road, the connection from Briarwood to MCC.  Fortunately, Crystal Lake City Councilman Jeff Thorsen pointed out the severe deficiency in his arguments against rezoning the property.

Next came this joyous sign:  “New signal ahead.”  The days of fearing for one’s life when trying to cross or even turn right on Route 176 from Crystal Lake’s West End is over.

On a trip west, I saw the sign above.

The new signals at Briarwood and Route 176 allow Briarwood traffic to enter and cross Route 176 safely.

A dangerous corner made safer through the cooperation of the Crystal Lake City Council and the Illinois Department of Transportation.

A roundabout is planned for the intersection of Mr. Thabor Road and Haligus Road, the next intersection west of the Briarwood Drive intersection.

It’s now possible to take the shortcut to Woodstock past Centegra’s Woodstock Hospital on Doty Road without worrying that one might complete the final journey in an ambulance.

While the “New signal ahead” sign on Briarwood Drive was a waste of money, the warning on Route 176 was essential.

And, the extent of this post is an indication why highway improvements are so valued by politicians.

People driving into Crystal Lake from the west are not likely to be pleased with the new stoplight.

People appreciate them.

Except those who have to stop where they did not have to do so before.


Signals Operating at Dangerous 176 Intersection in Crystal Lake — 4 Comments

  1. What was the cost? $1,000,000? $2,000,000? More?

    Patience, people; patience. So what if you have to wait 30 seconds for a gap in traffic? Even a minute. Take a different route.

    A roundabout for Mt. Thabor Rd. and Haligus? What a waste!

  2. It was a very, very dangerous corner, Gus.

    I’d say Briarwoood may have been the most dangerous corner in Crystal Lake.

  3. Yea Gus…why do we have any traffic signals at all? We just need people to be more patient!

    **rolls eyes**

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