COLCHESTER (AP) -- State and local officials are considering a new traffic design to help ease congestion at Interstate 89's Exit 16 in Colchester, one of the most accident-prone areas in Vermont.
Construction on the proposed "double crossover diamond," a highway exchange that lessens traffic by making it easier for motorists to get onto the highway without stopping, could begin in 2014.
"It's quite a good idea, a very appropriate traffic solution for the problem that exists at Exit 16," Colchester Public Works Director Bryan Osborne said.
The crossover diamond project would cost about $5 million, The Burlington Free Press (http://bfpne.ws/O0m45w) reported.
Meanwhile, Costco, the major retailer located just off Exit 16, has offered to add turning lanes to improve the traffic flow in the area until the permanent solution can be built.
The interchange between U.S. 7 and I-89 in Colchester is one of the busiest, most accident-prone spots in Vermont. Over the past two decades, a vibrant commercial district has sprung up at what was once easy access to the interstate.
The nation's first double crossover diamond opened in Missouri in 2009.
In a double crossover diamond, motorists are essentially are guided into the "wrong" lanes -- the ones on the left -- after passing through a set of traffic lights. Exiting motorists turn left without stopping, while motorists going straight go through a second set of lights, and then are guided back into the right-hand travel lanes.