Planning commission OKs Arco gas station

An Arco station is one step closer to construction on the southeast corner of Main Street and Rob’s Way in Susanville. However, the entire commission expressed a major concern for the area: Tragic traffic collisions.

In a unanimous decision, the city’s planning commission approved the parcel map, use permit, architectural design and site plan review to allow for a service station with a car wash and convenience store.

The presented parcel map called for splitting up the 2.1-acre property into two. The property closest to Main Street will be where the gas station will be placed, and the back property will be available for future development.

The two current buildings on the parcels will be demolished, there will be entrances to the service station from both Main Street and Rob’s Way and Rob’s Way will be widened as well as gutter, curb and drainage completions.

The commission also sent a loud, unanimous message of concern and that either a crosswalk or traffic light should be put in at the future location along Main Street and Rob’s Way, across the street from Round Table Pizza and the DMV.

The commission’s president, Linda Robinette, told the rest of the commission and city planner Marlin Johnson, that she had seen a number of horrible accidents near the location of the future gas station.

With the addition of the gas station, Robinette expressed concern because it would bring a bigger danger to those attempting a right or left-hand turn onto Main Street from Rob’s Way, and those attempting to cross the street as a pedestrian.

Robinette told the commission that even though she doesn’t “particularly enjoy more traffic lights in this town,” she saw it as being a possible solution to, not only the current amount multiple accidents at the location, but any future problems.

“I would definitely like the traffic at this particular location on Main Street to be slowed down,” said Robinette. “Just how traffic patterns are, by the time they come around that corner and hit that stretch, everybody starts picking up speed.” She then raised her hand and said, “Guilty. It’s just how people drive.”

City planner, Marlin Johnson told the commission he would reach out to his contacts with Caltrans and let them know the commissions’ concerns so that they are at least aware of the potential circumstances.

Commission member Wayne Jambois told Johnson and the rest of the commission there should be an assessment of the number of pedestrians who cross Main Street at that particular location.

“I think putting another convenience store there, we’re going to have double the number of people running across that road, just as we do down the street at the Shell station,” said Jambois. “And obviously it’s a safety concern, but I do feel if we had a light there, we would also have pedestrian passage (from) one side of the street to another.”