By Lynette Norris
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Residents in the neighborhood around Georgetown Road, in the southwest section of town, have gotten up a petition requesting speed bumps in the section of the road (about 2/10 mile) that lies inside the city limits. The rest of the road, about half a mile of it, lies in the county, and already has a few speed bumps, but the residents say that the posted speed limit of 25 mph in the city segment is rarely obeyed, and that in spite of stepped-up police patrols in the areas, the problem persists. Craig Anderson, a resident of Georgetown, appeared before the City Commission with Madison Police Capt. Willie McGhee to present the petition and make the case for speed bumps in that area. The road segment in question runs through what is like a “main street” type of neighborhood, with a barbershop, parks and churches generating heavy foot traffic. However, there are no sidewalks, so pedestrian safety is a concern. According to statements from Anderson and McGhee, the speeding problem appears to be primarily young people doing “burnouts” (squealing tires) on the road for fun. Anderson praised the police department’s efforts, saying that, “police enforcement has been there, but they can only do so much…they patrol, but the kids monitor the police too, so they know when they’re not there.” Because the City of Madison doesn’t have a set policy on this, City Manager Tim Bennett recommended looking at the county’s policy on the placement of speed bumps and added that he would like to have a rough draft policy in place for future cases of putting speed bumps in the city limits. In looking at it from a safety standpoint, McGhee felt that safety came first and the speed bumps were needed as soon as possible. “I patrol that area a lot,” he said. “My professional recommendation is to put them in place.” The City Commission agreed to take up the issue again at the February meeting. Meanwhile, the Commission will look at the county’s speed bump policy and see how it could be adapted for the city.