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ISP Directs Iowa City Traffic

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IOWA CITY - Police say people need patience as Iowa City tries to regain some normalcy.

The devastation from Thursday's tornado is still causing traffic problems on one of Iowa City's busiest streets. At the corner of Burlington and Clinton, police are directing traffic. They are helping alleviate rush hour traffic, and they will be around for the next couple of days at least.

Iowa City had no choice but to saw off a traffic signal Thursday night. The city will bring down several more before the end of the week. It will spend about $125,000 fixing four intersections on Burlington Street. The work is expected to be done by Thursday.

Iowa City Director of Public Works Rick Fosse said, "It seems like every few years we get a signal damaged by wind, so we're prepared to deal with it, but this is a scale we haven't dealt with before."

In the meantime, state troopers direct traffic. Cars move slowly, but Friday's chaos seems to have subsided. Iowa State Patrol Sergeant David Willis said, "Traffic is starting to get back to normal. Obviously there is still some stop and go traffic where the intersections are still manned by officers instead of lights."

Pedestrians caused many problems last week. With classes out, students wanted to survey the damage. Now police have walkers in control, too. Willis said, "As long as they work with us, it's not a problem."

Pedestrians and drivers seem to be cooperating. Police have not reported any accidents on Burlington, but Willis said the second a trooper lets down his guard is the same moment a driver is not paying attention. And that is when the accidents can happen.

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