SHA to reduce MD 213 speed limit
CENTREVILLE — A week after telling Symphony Village residents attending the Centreville Town Council’s Thursday, Sept. 15, meeting in the age-restricted community’s clubhouse that the State Highway Administration was looking at lowering the speed limit entering town on MD 213, Town Councilman Jim Beauchamp confirmed that SHA was in fact going to reduce the speed from 50 mph to 45 mph.
SHA officials did not return a call regarding a timetable for the speed reduction.
“What they were saying is it will get the stair-step then from 55 to 45 to 35 to 25 mph, so it will be that incremental progression,” Beauchamp said.
As well as the lowered speed entering town, Beauchamp said SHA is looking into rural traffic calming devices to “reinforce people to slow down.”
On March 24, representatives from SHA came to the Centreville Town Council meeting to hear residents concerns regarding the Route 213 speed limit entering town. Citizens in Symphony Village conducted a community survey regarding the potential change from 50 mph to 35 mph had more than 165 signatures in favor of a lower speed limit.
Citizens requested the speed reduction citing older ages of residents leaving Taylor Mill Road, which provides in-and-out access to Symphony Village, and difficulty gauging speeds of oncoming cars. One individual wanted the lower speed because of residents who walk and bike out of the community.
Jeff Wentz, district two traffic engineer with SHA, said solutions could be looked at and directed staff to conduct a traffic study to collect driver data. The town received a letter on May 10 from SHA stating a speed limit reduction was not necessary.
Having had a growing list of topics Beauchamp wanted to discuss with Maryland Department of Transportation officials, the councilman met with SHA Administrator Greg Johnson, SHA Deputy Administrator Dave Coin, the SHA deputy director for traffic and safety, SHA deputy secretary and district two engineer Greg Holsey. “So a room of heavy weights,” Beauchamp said.”
The laundry list of topics included lowering the speed limit coming off of US 301 onto MD 213 going into town, a potential school zone designation in front of the Wye River Upper School, the intersection of Rolling Bridge Road and US 301 as well as the potential use of the open land across from the Citco entering town.
The Centreville Town Council sent a letter to MDOT about a school zone designation for Wye River Upper School in which officials came out and conducted a sur vey. The results, officials found, was not worthy of creating a school zone designation.
Instead, a crosswalk from the high school across Commerce Street to Kidwell Avenue will be created as well as signs warning that there is a school ahead. Beauchamp said officials will coordinate with the town regarding sidewalk alignment because Kidwell is soon to be under construction.
“So those were three definite steps forward, which I was really pleased to hear,” Beauchamp said.
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Centreville residents fill the Symphony Village clubhouse during the Thursday, Sept. 15, town council meeting. Councilman Jim Beauchamp updated the residents about the potential speed limit reduction on MD 213 by the State Highway Administration.
The State Highway Administration has acted on the citizens’ of Centreville request to lower the speed limit from 50 mph to 45 mph heading into town from the US 301 interchange.