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Highland intersection is far down on fix-it list

I have been traveling Highland Avenue ever since it was created as a main route into Medford from the freeway exit. The roundabout works well, but once you get to Main Street, it becomes a nightmare.

It is very difficult to make a left turn onto Main Street from Highland, so traffic backs up. I'm amazed that traffic lights haven't been placed at this junction, or at least three-way stop signs. I wonder if you have any information as to the progress of this situation?

— Rosemary M., Ashland

Yes, we've noticed the intersection can be difficult to negotiate, Rosemary. Cars always seem to be going faster than you realize on Main Street.

We checked with the experts at City Hall. They have compiled a long list of intersections that need work, and Main and Highland is ranked No. 452 on the list, according to Cory Crebbin, public works director.

On another list of the 50-worst intersections, taking into account traffic volume and crashes, Main and Highland isn't even listed.

The worst intersection in the city is, drum roll please, 10th Street and Oakdale Avenue, which already has a traffic signal. There were five accidents at the intersection in 2011.

Crebbin said that Highland and Main eventually will get a traffic signal, but with so many other projects on the list, it is difficult to say when.

In the meantime, he said, residents should obey the speed limit, and Highland and Main should be relatively safe.

"It's not a great place," he said. "If everybody on Main went the speed limit, it would not be a bad place."