By Lindsey McPherson
So what is the greater "problem" - speeding or rain water? What is more important to Ken Ulman - his chances of being elected governor (which requires catering to environmental special interests who are going to vote for him anyway) OR spending a small amount of the $15 million dollars (the paltry $5M for road projects + the $10M for environmental "initiatives") on speed humps? Yes, it is all about revenue. Speed humps don't bring in money. Environmental "initiatives" bring Ulman campaign cash. Always, always follow the money.
Posted 7:41 AM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
He doesn't want speed bumps, he wants speed camera. They bring in money, BUT they DON'T even cut down real speeding as much as speed bumps do!
Posted 8:36 AM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
This is a dog and pony show. They discussed this beforehand, decided to "frame" it as a speeding "problem" but it's really a way to raise revenue. They should try cutting some of their bloated staff.
Posted 11:20 AM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
Strategically placed speed humps are way more effective than speed cameras in a residential community. Once you clear the one stationary speed camera and its pads, one can resume his/her speeding. Also, people get used to the fixed position and it is no longer effective. Here's a crazy thought: how about having the HCPD do residential enforcement once in a while on a rotating basis? Whatever the county does, it should not include those ridiculous traffic circles with the often-ignored yield signs! I see more near-misses in those circles than I care to witness.
Posted 3:16 PM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
farside, the same can be said for speed humps. Once you clear the stationary speed hump, one can resume his/her speeding until the next one. Also, the current camera proposal does not call for fixed pole-mounted cameras, so there will be no permanent camera locations for people to get used to. Which doesn't even make sense, because if people know the camera is there, it would be arguably MORE effective since peope won't speed unless they want a fine. I think traffic circles are great, they have been proven to reduce collisions at intersections significantly. http://www.ite.org/traffic/documents/AHA99B02.pdf
Posted 3:39 PM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
asdfgh. Speed bumps/humps are usually placed fairly reasonably close to each other so that it is more difficult, but not impossible, to reach HIGH speeds before arriving at the next one. Additionally there are miniature semi-traffic circles on some streets, usually in parts of Columbia, that force people to slow down, but these are only at intersections without stop signs. I do agree with you concerning major traffic circles. They can be confusing at times, but they have been proven all over the world to be safer than triffic-signaled intersections, depending on where they are placed.
Posted 4:18 PM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
Ulman had $750,000 for speed cameras in the budget a couple of years ago. Sensing this was politically risky, he has since backed off and decided to pursue the mobile version. Rest assured, this is planned incrementalism, a tactic of liberal government for decades. The first two will be called a roaring success, and then he will demand more units. ANY traffic control device will be useful for a short period, then the driver will resume his/her speed, which is normally what the flow of traffic allows - we are not all scofflaws ignoring the speed limit on a continuous basis. EVERYONE exceeds the limit at some time. EVERYONE. Cops are the only individuals who think the speed limit does not apply to them - have you ever seen a cop who does not tailgate until a driver moves over (after that driver slows down to keep from getting a ticket)? How many times does a cop roar by without his lights/siren on? Finally, traffic circles can be as dangerous as speeding - NJ even eliminated a large number because of this, just as HoCo was going nuts with installing them.
Posted 5:32 PM, 04.15.11 | Permalink
Speeding is evidently only 'perceived' as a problem. Are there a lot of crashes? Where is the data? Let's not find solutions for problems that don't exist. And there are other solutions like speed feedback signs. Has anyone evaluated any other alternatives or just the money-making ones?
Posted 12:10 AM, 04.17.11 | Permalink
There is a speed feedback sign on Gray Rock Dr. where there are no schools. I always check my speedometer against the sign whenever I drive by itand slow down if I need to. I'll bet, but I'm not positive, that most drivers do the same. It is a very visual reminder and much more effective than just the flashing sign at schools at startup and ending of the school day.
Posted 12:41 AM, 04.17.11 | Permalink
Along with traffic circles, narrowing roads has also been shown to decrease speeds. If the roads were narrowed to allow for protected bike lanes, there would be slower traffic and safe spaces for cyclists. For example: traffic lane, then on-street parking next to it, then a bike lane on the other side of the cars (preferably out of the "door zone"). It would be a win-win, and all it would cost is some paint.
Posted 10:07 AM, 04.17.11 | Permalink
It would also cause the widening of some roads because some roads are so narrow that that can't accommodate all that you say you want accommodated. Just the door zone on the curbside before the bicycle lane would take up three to four feet, depending on the car. Its far from just the cost of the paint.
Posted 10:56 AM, 04.17.11 | Permalink
Yes, I didn't mean to imply that this particular solution would work for absolutely all streets in HoCo. Different solutions would apply to different streets.
Posted 8:44 PM, 04.17.11 | Permalink
Posted 8:35 AM, 04.18.11 | Permalink
Please explain to me how two cameras, that are rarely in the same location day to day, snapping a picture of a vehicle going at least 12mph over the posted limit, with the owner (maybe not the driver) of the vehicle being sent a bill for $40 two weeks later will make school zones safer? I do not for the life of me understand why speed bumps and/or rumble strips have not been installed way before the ability to use speed cameras was an option, since speeding must have been the number one complaint for quite some time now. Speed calming devices work 24/7, do not require 1.23 million to install and surely don't have people questioning your motivation for putting them in place. I do not understand how you can take that amount of tax payer money and not put it towards real ticket writing officers who actually stop someone from speeding and provide a visual deterrent to others driving by to slow down as well as speed control devices like speed bumps do. I am not one of those Orwellian types who despises cameras for paranoid reasons, I am a 43 year old father of three who does care about slowing vehicles down. I am sure that you have heard it all from every angle, but this is a plea to all of you to think rationally-not emotionally- about speed control, to make a decision that actually slows cars down, not to implement one which is essentially a sin tax that lets you continue to speed as long as you can afford it and to make the children safe instead generating fines that have the appearance of doing so-thank you.
Posted 8:59 PM, 04.25.11 | Permalink