Maine Department of Transportation officials last week unveiled their traffic detour plan for the reconstruction of four miles of Route 3 in Bar Harbor, slated to begin next year. The plan involves temporarily making portions of Route 3 one-way only, inbound. Outbound traffic will be take mandatory detours. Assuring that one lane of road remains free for construction work, without disruption, will reduce the number of months needed for project completion. While probably a longer trip for some motorists, the fact remains that total travel time should be much less than stalling motorists in long traffic lines, while flaggers release alternating waves of cars.
In addition to the disruptions that residents and businesses within the affected area will bear during construction, the detour plan means more traffic on other major roads, including portions of Crooked Road and Norway Drive. Trucks arriving and leaving town will be asked to use Eagle Lake Road. Savvy commuters likely will reroute through Somesville, swelling traffic volumes there.
Residents and visitors enjoy the use of these highways for personal travel. And the goods and services we all rely upon, also must move across these same roads. Everyone will experience some inconvenience in the short run. Patience and understanding will be required.
But DOT engineers, town and Acadia National Park officials, the Route 3 project citizen’s committee and others involved in planning for the coming work deserve a hearty “thank you” for their dedication to making the process as responsive as possible.