Temporary traffic light installed at corner of Holly Hill, Prien Lake

By By John Guidroz / American Press

Crews are installing a temporary traffic signal at the corner of Holly Hill and Prien Lake roads, something two local officials

said is long overdue to ease traffic congestion in the area.

Officials with the state Department of Transportation and Development said the signal should be active by early next week.

The effort was spearheaded by officials with the Lake Charles City Council and Calcasieu Parish Police Jury.

City Councilman Stuart Weatherford said

the signal has been “an ongoing request” from residents in his district

since his

first term on the council began in 2005. He said the issue has

become more pressing because a hotel was recently built near

the intersection.

“It really became a safety issue in the (residents’) minds,” Weatherford said.

District 5 Police Juror Nic Hunter said the swift action by state officials to get the signal installed was part of a group

effort between the city and the parish.

“We were expressing a common goal to get that there, and DOTD heard us speak with one voice on behalf of the residents,” he

said. “We’re very happy that residents will have some relief.”

Weatherford said the signal is a temporary fix for the traffic issues at the intersection. Plans call for building a roundabout

at the intersection and adding a third lane to Prien Lake Road from the intersection to the Target store.

He said work on the roundabout cannot

start until the construction project along Sale Road is complete. That

project calls

for converting the two-lane road into a three-lane concrete road

with guardrails. Weatherford said part of Sale Road should

be open by August.