Earlier this year our neighborhood submitted a request for traffic-calming measures to the city. The request was for curb bump-outs along the 1100 to 1400 blocks of W Mansfield Ave. They were intended to slow speeders and discourage drivers from using it as a cut-through between N. Monroe and NW Blvd.
City engineers recently investigated the request (we think that’s when the electronic speed limit signs appeared) and they discovered that the problem included W Montgomery Ave as well. If anything, Montgomery had a bigger problem than Mansfield. A traffic light at the intersection of Montgomery and Monroe means that people hotfoot it for a block or two when the light is green. Trinity Catholic School is along that road, too, which makes inattentive speeders doubly dangerous.
Instead of curb bump-outs, the engineers proposed something more effective: traffic circles (aka “roundabouts”). They will address Montgomery Ave immediately and Mansfield will follow later, although it might require another application process next year to ensure that the project remains a top priority. Their preliminary plan for a total of six roundabouts — with trees and flowers, no less — is depicted below.
Over the next few weeks, the City of Spokane will be sending out letters to residents and businesses in the Montgomery area. If you’re in support of the project — and why wouldn’t you be when it means less transient traffic, fewer accidents, and fewer speeders? — you should promptly sign this letter and return it to the city. A group of volunteer residents will also doorbell with signature sheets to ensure that everyone understands the positive impact the project will have. We’ll need signatures from 50% +1 of properties for approval.
It’s important to note that this is not being funded by tax dollars. It comes from Photo Red funds. Photo Red funds come from people who are fined for running red lights. This money is pooled and then allocated to implement these types of traffic-calming projects. In other words, red-light runners are paying for you to be safer and your property values to go up.
More info will be posted as it becomes available. If you’re interested in helping to gather the required signatures, please get in touch. It will only take an afternoon at the most.