|Public cut out of Taber ''compromise'|
|The Press - Opinion|
|Written by Jim McGauley|
|Thursday, 22 March 2012 12:13|
More on the continuing saga of “Stop Sign Alley,” otherwise known as George Taber Blvd. in Glen St. Mary.
The newspaper is picking up more complaints from motorists who feel, as does yours truly, that the county’s effort to appease the First Baptist Church of Glen, which initially wanted to close Taber, amounts to silly overkill.
In what the county now calls a “compromise,” four stop signs were erected at Taber’s intersection with two east-west streets — Andrews and South Boulevard — ostensibly to slow traffic north and south past church buildings on both sides of the road.
In addition, the county installed a raised pedestrian crossing over Taber between the main church buildings and others to the west, plus a parking area.
County Manager C.J. Thompson said the plan was worked out between the county and church officials after the county commission balked at the church’s bid to close the road.Hence, the “compromise.”
Problem is, a compromise should be between the church, which exerted its right to insure the safety of its members during service and activity times, and the public that wants to keep Taber open and free of unneeded impediments to travel.
The stop signs are impediments to travel because they are unnecessary except during church activities.
The public, in effect, was left out of the compromise, which added to the perception that this plan is ill-conceived and motivated more by public officials’ desire to appease a church-based voting block than to find a reasonable and workable compromise that better addresses the concerns of both parties.
The reasonable plan, as suggested earlier in this space, would be spinning stop signs placed near the pedestrian crossing. They are pointed toward traffic during church times.
The reduced speed limit of 15 mph over the crossing is reasonable. The four stop signs on Taber should be removed; those stopping traffic at Taber from Andrews and Boulevard [all of about two dozen vehicles a day] will stay as before.
The county commission should re-visit this. The church has made its case for safety and the public its case for access to Taber.
The “compromise” isn’t that; it’s silly.