Drivers complain about new signal at Tennis Garden

LA QUINTA, Calif. - Some drivers complain about a part of the new expansion at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.  A new traffic light on Washington between Miles and Fred Warning is one red light too many for some drivers. 

"Just stay off Washington," said driver Lynn Kaesemeyer .

Driving south on Washington from Fred Waring, it's only .3 of a mile until you hit the new light at the Tennis Garden, .3 of a mile more, and you're at Miles Ave. 

"It's going to create a horrendous traffic jam on Washington," said Kaesemeyer.

The first few days have been rough for drivers, but the City of La Quinta says it's done on purpose.

"Because it wasn't a signal before, we want to make drivers aware that it's there so that they don't accidentally run through the intersection because they don't realize there is a new signal there.  When we first do, what we call a burn in period for the signal, we actually have it red more often than it is going to normally be in the future just to raise that awareness," said La Quinta public works director Timothy Jonasson.

"It's going to be a necessity at least for the two weeks that the Tennis Tournament is on," said driver Jim Lindblad. 

But the light, will be operational year round.

"It takes awhile, everybody has to get used to a new signal," said Jonasson. 

This new signal has been in the works even before the Indian Wells Tennis Garden decided to expand.

"It also serves the La Quinta side, there is a street Villa Sevilla," said Jonasson.


"Before the light lots of traffic, lots of ciaos, but it's nice nice that you are able to get some order in there and have a chance to get out instead of waiting forever and a day for traffic to slow," said resident Christy Jakell.

People in the La Quinta neighborhood tell us crossing Washington before the light was dangerous.

"A lot safer yes, rather than pulling out, because Washington does get really busy, does get a lot of traffic," said Jakell.

Traffic that will now have to stop occasionally at this new light. 

"Really unless there is somebody turning from one of the side streets, it's going to rest in green almost all of the time," said Jonasson.

We decided to see if that's true.  After driving through the new light several times, we were stopped only once by a red light at the new signal.  

"We will just have to figure out the best way to deal with it, I'll just go around," said Kaesemeyer.

The City of La Quinta says they want traffic to run smoothly as possible and if you notice it's not, they want to know about it.   You can do so by clicking here.

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