Q: Janice asks Street Scene: Please alert Bannerman Road officials to the deplorable condition of this busy road in Leon County. It is dangerous for several reasons, mainly because the road is not wide enough. Trucks driving past you are a date with death if anyone makes the slightest miscalculation. Trucks and cars are always coming off the side of the road causing the edge of the roadway to come off making the road even narrower.
A. I couldn’t agree more Janice, the maintenance of Bannerman Road is the responsibility of Leon County Public Works Department staff. They are reading your concern right now. Although there is no mention on their website that a survey was done a while ago so I suspect we will see a shoulder repair in the near future with a resurfacing project at the horizon. Thank you for your contribution to public safety.
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Deaths on the road:The Leon County Sheriff’s Office investigates a fatal crash on Highway 20; pedestrian killed
Raising speed limits is not the solution
Q Dakota chimes in on the speed aspect saying that it’s not 2002 anymore and some of our speed limits are ridiculously low. 45 mph on a 6 lane highway (Capital Circle) makes no sense and suggests reassessing speed limits to be more in line with reality. People have places to go and heavy traffic to pass through during the peak hours of the day, more in order than pulling out patrol officers to control our driving.
A. Thank you Dakota, I fully admire someone with the courage of their convictions. I have to admit though, when you say working in traffic during busy times, that sounds a lot like weaving between vehicles. Which I do not recommend on several counts. Now if you’re referring to the rural setting of Capital Circle SE, I agree the speed limit is unfairly low. In fact, I wrote about it. As we know, the development of this area is fast approaching.
I find it hard to imagine a thoroughfare in or around Tallahassee that gives us enough time to achieve significant speed before arriving at a signalized intersection or an area congested with drivers trying to get into the flow of traffic from the main line and pedestrians crossing the street.
Tallahassee is a very compact city with few opportunities for true multi-intersection vehicle progression.
Some outlying areas may qualify, such as Mahan Drive east of I-10, Thomasville Road north of Bradfordville, North Monroe Street north of Old Bainbridge Road. I also don’t see anywhere inside the city limits on West Tennessee Street or South Monroe Street. Perhaps South Adams Street / Crawfordville Road between Four Points and the Circle, which is full of private driveways and cyclists navigating on-street bike lanes.
First responders know that speeding does not hasten arrival at a planned city destination. The only method to move faster from the urban area is in an emergency vehicle with flashing lights and a blaring siren. Even then, we have to slow down and stop at every red light and stop sign. Contrary to popular belief, there are no exceptions to this law.
Emergency vehicle drivers are on high alert, knowing that not everyone will hear or see them coming. With the air conditioning on, the windows open, the radio or player on high volume, kids bickering, and/or multiple adult conversations, in other words, first responders rarely have a chance to gain appreciable speed. in an urban environment.
Now, if you’re traveling from Tallahassee to Atlanta or Jacksonville, it’s different. You could save 11 minutes on a trip to Jacksonville, but the potential for loss of control increases exponentially with speed. If you want to dismantle a pickup truck and the people in it, run it down a highway at over 80 mph – 117 feet per second while you go the distance of a football field in 2 1/2 seconds!
Development of Merchants Row
Q Mike, watching the townhouses on Merchants Row go up, is rightfully concerned about future unnecessary congestion at the intersection of Tram Road and Merchants Row Boulevard and asks if I have any idea why he’s seeing evidence a lack of planning or coordination for this area of the Southwood Office Complex.
A. Poor traffic planning is sometimes a feature of Tallahassee with many examples throughout our region. Thank you for bringing your astute observation to our attention about the obvious pending traffic jams and potential vehicle accidents if enough left turn storage lanes are not in the design as they are today.
Although there is another access to the development approximately one thousand feet to the west, a left-turn storage lane for east-north traffic similar in design to that of the Crossing Rocks Subdivision will be essential to ensure the motorist safety. A right turn storage lane will need to be part of the project to prevent westbound traffic from wanting to turn into Merchants Row Boulevard without causing a traffic buildup in the Capital Circle intersection.
National Bike Month
Thanks to Mary Kay writing to us last year, we know May is National Bike Month and there are quite a few fun bike rides planned by bike clubs in and around Tallahassee and Leon County. I recommend biketallahassee.com to find activities during the month of May and all other times of the year. Remember, when we’re not on our bikes, let’s watch out for those who are.
Philip Stuart is a former Florida State Trooper, traffic operations project engineer, and forensic expert witness. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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