A neighborhood says its streets are being treated like a drag strip. There are complaints of drivers speeding through without a care in the world. One Berclair mom is looking to change that with the installation of speed humps.
“My daughter and I play in the front yard,” said Kristin LaValley. “It’s dangerous with speeding cars. Whether you have kids or not, it’s a safety precaution to take.
Fed up with drivers from nearby Summer Avenue cutting through her neighborhood, LaValley told Local 24 she’s working with her neighbors to have the City of Memphis install speed humps.
Many of her neighbors agree the humps are needed.
“Drivers just fly through,” said Susan Harbin. “Sometimes they don’t even stop at the stop sign on Avon. They just fly right across that street and keep going like there’s no stop sign even there.”
Right now, LaValley is working to collect signatures from her neighbors, saying they are in favor of speed humps.
“If we get 75% of the neighborhood to agree,” she said, “we get the humps.”
But it’s not just a matter of collecting signatures.
The neighborhood has been working on this project for close to four years. Neighbors attempted to get speed humps installed a few years ago but failed to meet the city’s criteria.
According to the city engineers a neighborhood must meet speed and volume criteria.
In a statement to Local 24, the city laid out the guidelines for people look to have the city install speed humps. Here’s what the city said:
Speed Hump Request Procedures
- Identify the specific street segment of concern such as X Street between Y Street and Z Street. It is better to identify a specific street where there is a concern as opposed to requesting a speed hump study for every street in a neighborhood.
- It is desirable that a request for a speed hump study be from a neighborhood association or group. However, if one does not exist, requests for a study will be accepted from individuals.
- All requests for speed hump studies will be addressed in the order they are received.
- Street segments that do not meet the criteria contained in the Speed Hump Installation Policy will be rejected. Rejected street segments are not eligible for reapplication for a period of 2 years from rejection date. Street segments that do meet the criteria must be approved by at least 75 percent of the residences within an identified impact area. Approved street segments that do meet the criteria will be placed on a list for the installation of speed humps. The speed humps will be installed as funding is available.
Speed Hump Criteria
- Streets should be no wider than 40 feet (curb-to-curb) with a speed limit of 30 mph or less. Any street without a posted speed limit sign has a regulatory speed limit of 30 mph.
- Streets must be approved by the fire department prior to the installation of speed humps.
Project Approval Criteria
- Speed hump projects will be evaluated on the basis of existing speeds and volumes.
- Once a speed hump request has been evaluated and determined to meet the City’ s criteria, the request will be ranked according to the date a verification statement endorsing the speed humps is received from the neighborhood association, organization, or individual.
- For a street to be considered for speed humps, Condition 1 (Speed) and Condition 2 (Volume) must be met.
Speed – Condition 1
- The speed criterion considers the difference between the posted (or regulatory) speed limit of 30 mph or less and the measured speed of vehicles over a 24-hour period.
- To be considered, the 85th percentile speed along the street must exceed the speed limit by at least five mph.
Traffic Volume – Condition 2
- The 24-hour volumes (two-way) must exceed 600 vehicles or 60 vehicles during a single hour.
- The 24-hour volumes (two-way) shall not exceed 2,750 vehicles.
- Streets exceeding 2,750 vehicles are considered to be collector streets and not eligible for speed humps.
LaValley told Local 24 it’s a lot to take on but when it comes to safety, the procedure is working.
“We’re looking to have four speed humps put in,” she said. “I started this project a year ago. You just have to be persistent and know your neighborhood. It helps add fuel to your fire.”
Until the signatures are collected and the speed humps installed, the neighborhood is hoping drivers who cut through from nearby Summer Avenue will slow down.
“Treat this area like your own,” said Susan Harbin. “Act like your kids are playing nearby.”