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Traffic light replacement now underway

HOULTON, Maine — A six-month long project to install new traffic lights in the town is finally nearing completion.

Contractors for the Maine Department of Transportation began installing the new traffic lights at the intersection of Court and Military streets Monday and were still working at the intersection Tuesday morning.

According to Catherine Rand, project manager for the MDOT, the new LED traffic lights will provide greater energy efficiency and require less maintenance, thus saving money.

Back in January, 2016, the town of Houlton first learned that MDOT was planning a traffic light replacement project in the Shiretown. At that time, the project was estimated to cost $400,000.

Construction first began last August when crews worked to create new foundations for the large mast poles. Originally, the project was to be completed by November, but was delayed when redesigns to the mast poles were needed.

“One mast arm had to be redesigned for height at the intersection of Court and Military streets,” Rand said Monday. “It was changed from 40-feet high to 30-feet to avoid interfering with utilities. Mast arms are designed to be safe structurally and the redesign accounts for some of the delay; however, most of the delay was from manufacturing. There are only a few companies that produce this type of mast arm in the United States.”

Additionally, the lights at the intersection of Bangor, Kendall and Main streets will be replaced. Rand said the entire project should be completed by the end of February.

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