Light represents a hopeful sign

A new traffic light was put into service on University Boulevard Thursday to serve the new traffic pattern as Franciscan Square continues to grow and develop.

Those who go to and from the Franciscan University of Steubenville on a regular basis should be welcoming the signal as an “it’s-about-time” moment.

Others will consider having their drive up or down the hill on University stopped intermittently as a sort of new traveler’s burden.

But, the light is a sign of progress in a whole new way.

For years, Steubenville has been removing traffic lights from formerly busy downtown intersections. Stop signs have become the norm south of Adams Street on Fourth Street and Fifth Street. The light at Fifth and Dock streets was taken out decades ago, all a result of reduced traffic loads.

The sight of a new signal in a new place indicates an anticipation of activity, upheld by traffic studies. Pedestrian movements to and from the university campus and Franciscan Square’s commercial developments also will be served by the light.

Consider the signal as something more than a traffic control. Consider it as a hopeful sign that the future may be different from the present for Steubenville.

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