FLORENCE — It isn’t likely that West Mobile and West Irvine streets will be getting speed cushions, but they could qualify for “rumble strips,” warning motorists to slow down.
City Councilman Dave Smith said he has been asked by residents if something can be done to slow traffic on the two streets.
In a meeting of the City Council’s Public Works Committee on Thursday, of which Smith is a member, the criteria for placing speed cushions were laid out by city engineer Bill Batson. He said the criteria are closely adhered to, though some “wiggle room” is built in.
“Average daily traffic count and distance to the nearest stop sign are the two criteria we have been flexible with,” he said.
Batson said West Mobile and Irvine streets do not meet the criteria for speed cushions, but they likely would meet the standards for rumble strips, elevated reflective strips that remind motorists to slow their speed.
West Mobile’s last traffic count in a 12-hour survey was 4,200 vehicle a day, and Irvine’s count was 3,000, Batson said. The counts could be higher based on 24 hours of traffic, he said.
Speed cushions became common several years ago in response to resident complaints about speeding on residential streets and a lack of traffic patrol officers. Batson said a traffic committee was formed after the first few cushions were placed. There are now more than 20 traffic cushion sets in the city, he said.
The traffic committee, in addition to Batson, includes Police Chief Ron Tyler, Fire Chief Charles Cochran, Planning Director Melissa Bailey, Electricity Department Operations Director Chip Rasch and Emergency Management Agency Director George Grabryan.
Smith said Thursday’s committee meeting gave him a more thorough understanding of how traffic safety decisions are made.
“I can explain this to the citizens now that I understand it,” he said.
Smith also asked about making portions of Fayette and Nance streets one-way thoroughfares.
He said the streets are narrow and might move traffic more safely if they are one-way streets.
Batson said he does not object to that, provided the police and fire departments have no objections, and if a majority of the residents on those streets sign petitions asking for the change.
Robert Palmer can be reached at 256-740-5720 or robert.palmer@TimesDaily.com.