Ensure safety of walkers, bicyclists when raising speed limits
Originally published on June 26
A higher, uniform speed limit on Manatee County roads may be more convenient for motorists (Bradenton Herald, June 18). But let's make sure we don't do it at the expense of pedestrians and bicyclists.
For example, most of 63rd Avenue East, east of U.S. 301, is a two-lane road with no bike lanes. The sidewalk switches from one side of the road to the other and disappears entirely at points. The speed limit on this section is already 40 mph, which means 45 or 50 mph to most drivers.
The same situation exists on 33rd Street East north of 63rd Avenue, but there the posted speed limit is even higher.
At the least, the segments of sidewalks on these roadways should be connected. This would give walkers and bike riders a fighting chance.
It would offer an alternative to the scary reality: balancing on the white line at the pavement's edge, inches from speeding vehicles.
As three new housing developments in this area are completed, traffic will only increase. Walkability is supposed to be a goal of the county. Please consider the safety of all when making roadway changes.
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