I was driving by Fourth and Maine this week, and it looked like something was attached to a traffic light pole at the intersection. What was it? Was it a camera?
It appears that it was a device used for an ongoing regional transportation study. We went by the intersection and didn't see anything out of the ordinary, but Chuck Bevelheimer, Quincy's director of planning and development, said it was likely associated with the study.
"Lochmueller Group was collecting traffic count and turning movement data for the Regional Transportation Study," Bevelheimer said.
The Quincy City Council approved the regional transportation study in January after it awarded a $150,000 contract to the Troy firm. The city received a $120,000 grant for the study, with balance covered by tax increment financing district and motor fuel tax funds.
The yearlong study will look at transportation in the city as a whole, but a major component of it is to look at bridge alignment with a Quincy Memorial Bridge replacement with York Street.
In 2017, the Illinois Department of Transportation received a recommendation from consulting group Crawford, Murphy and Tilly that York Street is the best option for bridge alignment over Maine and Broadway options at a projected savings of $50 million.
A meeting of the city's Transportation Steering Committee was held in June where it identified strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for growth within the city's transportation system.
Consultants will host a public meeting Aug. 20 to collect input. A draft version of the study, including potential recommendations, will be presented by the firm in September, with a public meeting in October to gather feedback.
Recommendations from the firm will be presented in February 2020, with a March 2020 public meeting to discuss recommendation before a final report.
Here's a request for some help from readers.
This question was sent in recently, and we thought we would ask readers for help:
"In honor of July being National Hot Dog Month and July 17 being National Hot Dog Day, I was hoping you could help us find out where someone can buy a great hot dog in the Quincy area. I'm at a loss as to where you can find a great hot dog in the Quincy area. Even at my age, I can still recall the wonderful chili dogs and frosty root beer you could get for 35 cents at the A&W on North 12th Street where Niemann Foods headquarters is now."
Informal discussions in The Herald-Whig newsroom only come up with a couple recommendations.
We're not going to get in a discussion about what makes a great hot dog right now, whether we're talking about a Chicago hot dog, a Coney dog, cheese dog etc., though this author is opposed to ketchup on hot dogs.
If you have suggestions, feel free to pass them along, and we'll include some in a future column.
How can my question be answered? Just ask. We'll quiz community leaders, business officials, historians, educators -- whoever can tell us what you want to know. Submit questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to Answers, The Herald-Whig, P.O. Box 909, Quincy, IL 62306. Provide a name and phone number so we can respond or clarify information. Questions dealing with personal or legal disputes will not be accepted.