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Central Avenue in Maize changed to Academy Avenue

MAIZE, Kansas There is an intersection of Central Avenue and Maize Road here that has a small-town feel to it. Problem is, theres another intersection of Central Avenue and Maize Road about six miles to the south in Wichita that is busier and much more well-known.

To avoid further confusion, Central Avenue in Maize has been officially renamed Academy Avenue. The problem is well-documented for Maize residents.

Its a safety issue, Maize city administrator Richard LaMunyon said. If someone calls and says they have an emergency at Central and Maize Road, there are two Central and Maize roads.

LaMunyon cites two instances of calls for help to the countys dispatch system from Central and Maize in Maize where emergency personnel ended up at the wrong place. Where were they? You guessed it: Central and Maize in Wichita, he says.

People get confused, LaMunyon said. When theyre in an emergency, especially if theyre not from Maize, when you drive into Maize, you dont know when youre in Wichita and when youre in Maize.

County officials say they are happy to see the confusing situation avoided.

We have a lot of tools to avoid making those errors, but any time we can eliminate a duplicate, its always a good thing, Kim Pennington, director of Sedgwick Countys 911 communications, said.

There may be a bit of a learning curve with learning a new name, but dispatchers believe the name change will make their jobs a little bit easier.

One of the things were going to have to struggle with for awhile is people who have always known that street as Central are going to continue to call it Central, but no matter which way we put it in, it will go to the correct location, Pennington said.

 

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