Does Lawton Really Need Another Stoplight On Cache?
For a while now, the rumor has been that the city is planning on installing an additional stoplight at that odd median break on Cache Road where Chicken Express is. Last week as I was making my daily commute, I saw a small crowd of men standing in the parking lot where Mathis Brothers are supposed to build looking at that stretch of road. I didn't stop to ask but the polo shirts and khaki's had "City Hall" written all over them. This might be just another travesty in a long line of crappy city infrastructure planning.
Here's the thing, people actively avoid venturing into Lawton city limits specifically because we have so many stoplights in town. That's no lie, it's true.
When living in Northern Oklahoma throughout my youth, when my parents would bring us down to Hollis to see the grandparents, we always swooped around Rogers Lane and never any further into town. Until I actually moved here in 2006, I had never seen anything beyond Rogers Lane and 82nd Street. This is back before they connected US-62 with the Rogerbahn.
There was one year my mom was taking me to summer camp down in Faxon and we stopped at the Sheridan Walmart to grab some last-minute necessities, but who remembers roads and stuff when you're eleven?
I'm also pretty sure once or twice my dad backtracked down Quannah Parker Trailway to that little gas station in that neighborhood. I want to say it used to be a Shamrock or the one with the green dinosaur on the sign way back when, but I can't be sure. I just remember dad buying coffee and beef jerky on those late-night drives when he just couldn't make it to Altus first.
I always asked them "Why don't we ever go into Lawton?"
Mom's standard answer was always "It's too dangerous."
Dad always said, "There are too many stoplights."
It wasn't until I moved here that I finally got to experience what it's like living in a town of too many stoplights. Well, kind of... It's not that there are too many stoplights in town, they're just placed in all sorts of dumb places. It's as if they grow like weeds out of the shoulders in the most random places.
Now, with Mathis Brothers coming to town, the city is planning on adding another Stoplight to Cache Road at that turnaround that people always use dangerously to cross four lanes for some fried chicken? Do we really need a stoplight there? It's just a block from the stoplight at 44th and Cache.
Don't get me wrong, if I was Mathis Brothers, I would totally want a stoplight there to better serve the few that might pop in to purchase some furniture... but the needs of the many far outweigh the needs of the few correct?
Instead, why don't they just curb that entire section of Cache Road? The infrastructure is already in place to continue to 52nd, swoop around the light at Cache and you're back on that side of the street easy-peasy.
Would it be inconvenient for those wanting to buy furniture and fried chicken? Probably... but for the majority of drivers traversing the cratered roads of Lawton, this would be more ideal than yet another stupidly placed stoplight.
I want you to think about stoplight placement for a second. Is there a place that has one that really shouldn't? Or perhaps is there a place that could easily be fixed to do away with an existing stoplight?
Here are the ones that stick out to me.