It was neat to see citizens come out to the city council meeting on Wednesday night to speak out on the issue of speed humps on N. Birch Street.
In all, 5 citizens spoke in favor of them and 7 spoke against them, and the council received about 20 emails from citizens prior to the meeting, too. A traffic impact study was conducted on N. Birch St. by an independent agency and they recommended the City install 6 speed humps between the span of 9th and Territorial on Birch St. They would be 3 inches high and 14 feet long to control cars to go no faster than the 25 mph speed limit on that street.
Although I am sympathetic to the residents of Birch St. for the volume of traffic they experience daily and the annoying sometimes-speeding cars, I do not think it is wise to install the speed humps.
I understand that other calming measures have been taken in the past, such as the traffic island at Territorial Rd., painted 25 mph signs on the pavement, and blinking radar signs that flash a passing car’s speed, and that there remain cars that speed on that stretch, but I question the precedent we are setting by taking this action. What factors are we using to determine when and where it is appropriate to install them?
Apparently, half of the residents on that stretch of Birch are not in favor of speed humps, according to 2 residents who took an informal survey of 17 other home owners that live between 8th and 12th Street.
The city council did not make a decision on this matter, as it is the purview of the city administrator to make the final decision. At least the City will be looking at our Traffic Safety Plan in the near future to consider long-term plans for our future population growth.
Thank you to all of the citizens who were civically engaged on this local issue and voiced your opinion, either for or against.