I support street safety. There’s been some talk about re-striping Douglas and 36th Ave. N. back to the two lanes that they used to have, instead of keeping the new one lane system. I think the new one lane system is a move in the right direction, but that there still needs to be a few adjustments to make them even safer and work better for everyone.
The new striping system does tend to make traffic drive slower, which is what it was supposed to do. And even with that, I still see people speeding and trying to whip around when they want to go faster. It also provides a much needed space for bike lanes. It was difficult to ride bikes on the streets before the new striping, and now there is true space for a bike-rider to exist on the road along with cars.
But, even with the benefits, I don’t think we’re done yet. There are still dangerous intersections, such as Douglas and 36th Ave. N. and around Regent and 36th Ave. N. The roads go from one back to two lanes around there, and I believe that people start trying to whip around others again in these locations. Douglas and 36th Ave. N. has historically been a dangerous intersection. I think we need a study on these intersections and a public hearing. Maybe stop signs need to be placed a block or two back before the intersections with the stoplights. This would slow down drivers before approaching where it goes back to two lanes around the stoplights. I’m like to hear comments from the community and bring in traffic experts.
There also need to be more safe areas for pedestrians to cross Douglas and 36th Ave. N. Maybe crosswalks could be painted at a few locations to let drivers visualize that pedestrians share this space also. Maybe other stop signs could be put in at key determined locations. On Douglas Dr., if stop signs were put in, it would allow people to be able to turn into neighborhoods if they are having trouble now, as well as help pedestrians. During the summer, Crystal Cove always has an employee act as a crossing guard to safely help pedestrians cross Douglas to come over the Community Center. If a stop sign were placed there, it would help those pedestrians, as well as the drivers who need to turn.
I also think the difference in speed limits doesn’t make sense on 36th Ave. N. and Douglas Dr. 36th Ave. N. is 30 MPH and Douglas Dr. is 35 MPH. I think they should both be the same, as they are both main roadways. I am in favor of both being 35 MPH, with strategic stop signs being placed along the roads. But, I would listen to recommendations of traffic experts and residents. Please feel free to contact me on this issue. I value your opinion and want to make our community safer for our families and children, as well as functional for us as we’re driving.