By Bethany J. Royer
PIQUA — The section of Wood Street to College Street heading east from Covington Avenue was described as a highway exit ramp at a commission work session held Thursday evening at the government complex. Referencing how drivers tend to speed through the area that was transitioned in August 2013 to a one-way street to eliminate the very issue.
Unfortunately, say the residents living on the block, including Cindy Pearson, drivers continue to speed through the 25 mph area, with signatures collected so as to close one entry and thus make the block only accessible to those who live on it and for entry/exit from and onto Gordon Street.
“Something needs to be done,” said Pearson, expressing concern for families and those with limited mobility getting in and out of their vehicles on the busy street. One that has been the topic of much debate for well over a year as work sessions began in January/February 2013 to discuss potential improvements. This included changing the two-way street to one-way as traffic moved east between Covington Avenue and College Street after a traffic study was performed to determine whether or not the change would be feasible and aid in traffic speed.
After the change to a one-way street had been agreed upon and made, the purchase of the blighted 650 Wood St. property and its subsequent demolition furthered improvements to the heavily trafficked area.
Stating changes had already been made as requested, Commissioner Bill Vogt inquired of Bruce Jamison, chief of police, whether there had been any pedestrian accidents in the area in regards to Pearson’s concern.
“I don’t know of any pedestrian accidents,” replied Jamison as commission proceeded to voice their concerns on solving one problem — speed on Wood Street — to only create another problem should access be cut-off, resulting in traffic congestion at the Covington Avenue/College Street intersection.
“One problem creates another problem,” said Vogt, with suggestions offered by those in attendance including the installation of speed bumps on Wood Street, creating a barrier to reduce the entry and slow drivers down, demolition of homes, or the placement of a stop sign at the Gordon Street/Wood Street intersection.
In conclusion, further traffic analysis and potential aid from the state will be the next course of action for, as stated by Commissioner Judy Terry, there is no good answer.
Bethany J. Royer may be reached at (937) 773-2721 or on Twitter @TheDailyCall