A sign marks the beginning of one-way traffic along Route 3 in Bar Harbor. The one-way section had started near Pirate's Cove minigolf, but has been changed temporarily, allowing easier access to businesses along that stretch of road. ISLANDER PHOTO BY LIZ GRAVESS

Route 3 sign tweaks sought

BAR HARBOR — “All businesses open and accessible,” say signs on the one-way detour loop set up during the Route 3 reconstruction project. But owners of businesses along the affected stretch of road say customers have been struggling to find them.

Business owners met with representatives of the Maine Department of Transportation Wednesday morning to discuss traffic flow in the affected neighborhood.

Eric Hanson of the Log Cabin Restaurant said some customers have told him their navigation systems indicate the construction zone on Route 3 is closed entirely.

“We’ve had people say there was no way to get to us,” said Laura Johnson of Mainely Meat Dreamwood Hill, which is not affiliated with the Mainely Meat in Town Hill.

She said many tourists are taking the Crooked Road detour all the way to Town Hill rather than circling back to Route 3 on Norway Drive.

“Business at the other Mainely Meat has picked up 60 percent,” she said, “and I’ve gone down 60 percent.”

Richard Blaidsdell of Pirate’s Cove minigolf said the signs at the intersection of Crooked Road and Norway Drive could be added to direct motorists to “Route 3, Bar Harbor” in addition to the existing “Salisbury Cove and Hulls Cove” signage.

“That would be a tremendous help,” he said.

Since April, Route 3 has been designated one-way between Ireson Hill near Pirate’s Cove and Crooked Road. Businesses including Hutchins’ Cottages, the Log Cabin Restaurant, Mainely Meat, Udder Heaven, Hinckley’s Dreamwood Cottages and the Bar Harbor Campground have had signs indicating that traffic is one-way from their driveways.

They’re getting a temporary reprieve from that one-way restriction.

“The one-way section of the Route 3 project was shortened last week temporarily to give the local businesses in that section of the project access to two-way traffic down to Sand Point Road,” DOT representative Carmen Forzetting said. “It wasn’t something that was publicized, but it will stay in effect until the contractor plans to conduct more work in that section. Once that happens, traffic will be back to one-way, and travelers will need to adhere to the signage that will be placed.”

Johnson said allowing two-way traffic in that section, even if it’s only for a few weeks, has helped her business “a huge amount.”



Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.

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