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Dubuque County residents voice concerns over road

DUBUQUE, Iowa (KWWL) – A group of neighbors are joining forces to fix a county road, an effort that has been 20 years in the making.

For residents driving along Hales Mill Road, they say that danger lurks on every corner.

A steep slope and and sharp curve on the road has one resident, Alysia Hedrick, afraid to pull out of her driveway. Speed and erosion also add to the danger.

“It’s almost scary pulling in and out of here because of the way traffic comes by,” said Hedrick. “And when you’re waiting to pull out, you don’t know if the person coming around the corner is going to make it up the hill or not.”

County Engineer, Anthony Bardgett, has proposed repaving the two-and-a-half mile section of the road and build it up to correct the slope. They also plan to add more street signs.

However, residents like George Hellert, argue that the road should be graded down and pitched inward to keep traffic away from the edges of the street.

“It’s going to get even worse,” said Hellert. “We’re going to have higher traffic volumes, people will be speeding at a much higher rate, and even water from the rain is going to beat off the new black top much faster and make it a lot more slippier than normal.”

Mike Riniker owns the Diversified Mechanical Services store right in front of the curve. He has met with County Supervisors many times to voice his and his neighbors concerns.

“And the thing is that you can’t make it perfect. But if you can do something to save somebody’s life or to prevent someone to be disabled for the rest of their life,” said Riniker. “The small price that it’s actually going to cost, not the inflated price, I don’t see how you can put a value on that.”

Bargett said that they are working to find the best solution and that safety is their top priority. Dubuque County Sheriff, Joe Kennedy, said that there have been five traffic citations and six accidents on the road this year.

Ashley Scott

Reporter, Dubuque

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