Designers work to find solution for Overton Square traffic - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

Designers work to find solution for Overton Square traffic

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It is clear when you drive through Overton Square that something's going on. It is clear when you drive through Overton Square that something's going on.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Over the course of the last six months Overton Square has begun a major revitalization with several new restaurants and stores and even a new mural. But with that comes more traffic, and more traffic often leads to more crashes.

It is clear when you drive through Overton Square that something's going on.

"It's cool to see new buildings and murals pop up. It's pretty neat," said Gabe Fickett describing a drive through Overton Square on a Friday night.

There's a lot to experience in new restaurants, store fronts and construction.

"More traffic here, pedestrian or otherwise," said John Talyor.

Taylor spends a lot of time in Overton Square and is a big fan of the change that's taking place. But says many drivers are not paying attention to the road when they drive through.

Just ask Monica Selby, who witnessed a crash last week while she was eating on the patio at Chiwawa.

"We hear a big crash and loud glass everywhere and that kind of thing. And we looked across the street and someone had been coming and hit a parked car," said Selby.

That crash was one of several just last week. Several witnesses said there was a crash in June that sent glass flying onto a nearby patio. That cleared the patio and left staff a big mess to clean up.

So what's causing the crashes? Overton Square regulars attributed a lot of them to the increased number of cars looking for parking on the street; many of them attempting to pull out into traffic through the bike lane.

"I think people are unaware that there is parking and they just wanna fly through and it's a 20 mile an hour zone," said Sally Miller.

Some suggest more traffic lights. But Overton Square designers are aware of the problem and currently working on a solution.

Construction is underway for a 450 space parking garage set to be finished by the fall.

In the meantime, drivers beware. Watch out for pedestrians, parking cars and more traffic ahead.

"I think it's good for Midtown," said Miller.

There is a speed limit sign posted at the entrance of Overton Square, warning drivers with flashing lights that the speed is reduced to 20 miles per hour through the area.

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