Work has begun on a new traffic signal in Union.

Months after the project was originally slated to start, crews began working last week on the installation of the new traffic signal at the intersection of Highway 50 and Progress Parkway.

The project was delayed because of a shortage of materials needed to complete the work.

The city had hoped to have the project done in early July, but that wasn’t possible. Union City Engineer Jonathan Zimmermann said the issue is that the arms and posts needed for the signal were on back order.

The pieces were ordered in May when the city approved the contract for the work. At the time, Zimmermann said it would take 13 weeks until they were available.

The city entered into a contract with Reinhold Electric, St. Louis, for a traffic signal and intersection and improvement project at a special meeting in late May. The project will cost $194,134.50.

The city sped up the contract approval in hopes of getting the signal up and running before the Fourth of July fireworks show at Veterans Memorial Park.

That turned out to be impossible. Zimmermann found out in June about the unavailability of parts.

With the proposed delay, Zimmermann said it wouldn’t be possible to meet the city’s deadline.

Zimmermann said he asked the contractor to order all the other necessary equipment in order to be ready to work as soon as the posts and arms are shipped. Once work starts, he said it’s supposed to be a 30-day project.

Union City Administrator Russell Rost told The Missourian the project is needed because of development in the area.

“The intersection now, that’s where the improvements to Highway 50 ended and Highway 50 goes from four lanes back to two,” Rost said. “It’s the major entrance to our industrial park and the new Veterans Memorial Park and some housing that has been developed so the traffic volume has increased.”

The project consists of installing a new traffic signal with flashing yellow arrow traffic signal heads and wireless interconnect to the adjacent signal at Prairie Dell.

The work also will include some minor pavement marking, island modification, signage, traffic control and other incidental items.

The Missouri Department of Transportation will take over the signal once the work is finished.

The project is part of an agreement between the city and the Union Development Corporation. Funds were set aside from the sale of industrial property to pay for the work, Rost said.