Daily Herald
One intersection to watch out for
By Marni Pyke | Daily Herald Staff
Published: 7/15/2009 12:00 AM

If there's one place to avoid rolling right on a red light or pushing the envelope on a yellow one, it's Route 83 and Riverside Drive in Villa Park.

The location is policed by red-light cameras that are so busy that the intersection has the highest average number of citations issued a month in suburbs surveyed by the Daily Herald.

An analysis of municipalities showed an average of 699 tickets a month for red-light violations at Route 83 and Riverside, compared to the median number of 192.5 citations.

Asked what makes these cameras so prolific, police noted that Route 83 is a major artery and is next to a Walmart store. It's also close to Oakbrook Center mall and to I-290 and I-88.

"I imagine it's because people aren't stopping at the red light like the law says they have to," said Villa Park Chief of Patrol Services Robert Budig.

The village did not have a breakdown of the type of citations the cameras are issuing, although Daily Herald research found in general that the majority of tickets originate from right turns, compared to the more dangerous maneuvers of going left or through on a red light.

"The bottom line is that the law is very clear," Budig said. "You must come to a complete stop before proceeding through the intersection. If you do that, you don't have to worry about getting a ticket."

The cameras were installed this spring, so it's too early to assess how the technology is affecting traffic safety at the intersection, police said.