Jefferson Board looking at lights for Main Street

Wil Petty

February 4, 2014

The Jefferson Board of Aldermen discussed adding new street lights on Main Street from its intersection at U.S. 221 Business and N.C. 88 to the entrance of Ashe Memorial Hospital at its monthly meeting held Monday, Jan. 27.

“Right now we are just looking into getting some lights for the area,” said Cathy Howell, Jefferson town manager.

Howell said the town remains in the planning phase and have begun talking to Blue Ridge Electric. At the time of the meeting, the N.C. Department of Transportation had not responded.

“It has not actually been engineered,” she said. “We have some other aspects we have to look at first.”

Putting street lamps on Jefferson’s Main Street has been in discussion for a some time. In 2012, the town of West Jefferson had new street lamps installed on Jefferson Avenue.

“If they can do it in West Jefferson, we could do it in Jefferson,” said alderman Mark Johnston.

Johnston was concerned the street lamps might be damaged by motorists and suggested it would be best to put them close to buildings within the town.

“We then run into a problem with right of way,” Howell said.

The lights the town are looking at are the same ones they have at Foster-Tyson Park, located off East Main Street.

There was then discussion about if prior approval by the state was needed to install the lights. Alderman Charles Caudill said with the potential of the road being four-laned, that might require the N.C. DOT to step in.

Howell then said she knew of places in Boone that require approval from the state.

“(Getting lights) has been a long, slow process,” she said.

Caudill said the intersection of U.S. 221 business and Main Street would improve from the additions.

“That intersection is going to look a lot better,” he said.

In other action:

— The meetings from the Board’s December meeting were approved.

— In attendance were: Aldermen Charles Caudill, Mike Herman, Mark Johnston and Max Yates. Town manager Cathy Howell was also in attendence.

— The Board’s next meeting will take place Monday, Feb. 24 at 7 p.m. in the Jefferson Town Hall.

Wil Petty can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @WilPetty