I have read with interest the ALDOT proposal and reactions from the public in your November 2012 issue. My first impression is that ALDOT held the public meeting to tell what WILL be done inasmuch as plans are to let the bidding begin in April 2013 rather than seek input from citizens which might be utilized.
Reading the suggestions, I believe the citizens have a better grasp on this matter than the entire team of engineers at ALDOT. Specifically, Priscilla Hall's suggestion about changing the timing of the lights could be done with a whole lot less than $12-15 million invested. Do it and then evaluate in six months or so. Very little investment (man hours) and perhaps a decided improvement.
Hollis Black made some wise suggestions as well. However, I believe his first suggestion, to have police and wrecker services move cars to the side is not something that will affect everyday travel. I wholeheartedly agree with what he says about too many lights. And I can tell you from personal experience the timing of the lights is foolish even at night. I am a nurse who visits patients at night when I'm on-call, and many is the night when I get stopped (usually at the light at Chick fil-A, at Superior Grill or at the entrance to Brook Highland Shopping Center across from the pond with the water spout). Usually all three of these lights will stop me even when there is not another moving vehicle in sight (and there's not too many at 2-4 a.m.).
My input is to refer to how traffic is handled in downtown Memphis. First, they do not have a median. But, they use lanes for two directional traffic. Each lane has a red X or a green arrow and these change based on the time of day. More traffic moving from East Memphis gives an additional lane with a green arrow coming INTO town. At the end of the day, that is marked with a red X and the traffic moving OUT of town gets the green arrow. Also, each intersection is marked and you can't make a left-hand turn at EVERY traffic light. Some are marked X so you have to go farther down to make that left-hand turn. I lived there 10 years. Trust me, it works. Now, digging up the medians...?
Of course, all of this is because we had no long range planning done at the outset to keep buildings farther back and allow for the creation of frontage roads. Water under the bridge.