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Decision on County Road 21's fate expected Monday

JEFFERSON TOWNSHIP, Ind.--The official decision on the possible closure of C.R. 21 is expected on Monday.

Cars on the bypass whizz by at 50, even 60 miles per hour. So when drivers get to the stop sign on C.R. 21, they are faced with a long wait and a very dangerous attempt at crossing the road.

"It affects public safety," said Doug Weldy, fire chief, Jefferson Township Fire Department.

Weldy and his emergency crews would know. This crossing is the fastest way to get to neighborhoods northwest of the bypass.

"It's our way of getting up to that area," added Weldy.

Despite the danger, he says this intersection needs to stay intact. But INDOT wants to see it gone for safety reasons.

"We got a request from INDOT saying are you interested in cul-de-sacing [SIC] C.R. 21?" said Mike Yoder, county commissioner.

Yoder and the other two county commssioners must decide Monday morning.

Members at Elcona Country Club, located right on the corner of C.R. 21, hope the vote is in favor of closing it off.

"We share a common goal with the area residents and that's an improvement in public safety," said Dennis Brosh, president, Elcona Country Club.

They say the intersection is dangerous for visitors and nearby neighbors agree.

"It's a difficult left turn to go east onto US 20," said resident Keith Griffin. "It's very difficult under good conditions without the construction."

But Chief Weldy isn't sold on the plan. It all comes down to the detour emergency responders would have to take. One he timed out himself.

"And there was a difference of about a minute to a minute and a half from either direction," said Weldy.

He says those 60 to 90 seconds they'd save using the road truly matter for the person waiting on the other side of the bypass.

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