SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, Pa. (WKBN) — In Leesburg, the roads are a topic of discussion, particularly how to cut down on speeding near U.S. 19 and State Route 208. Wednesday night the mayor, engineers, and other planners met with residents to get their input on how to fix the speeding.
Changes could soon be coming to a strip of U.S. Highway 19. Local residents have been complaining about a problem with speeding for years but hope recommendations from a recent study will help change that.
“Some of these vehicles are going 60, 70 miles an hour,” said resident Melvin Booher.
State Route 208 is a split highway that divides at Highway 19. The posted speed limit through 19 and 208 ranges from 35 miles an hour to 55.
Booher has lived on 208 close to Highway 19 for more than two decades.
“The speed limit is bad in that area. It’s 55 when the rest of the road is 45,” said Booher.
He wants to see the speed limit on 208 lowered to 45 miles per hour, but city leaders and project engineers say that’s not possible because of state and federal regulations called the 85th Percentile Speed rule.
“They analyze the speed of the vehicles going through the corridor and what they take to set the speed limit at is the 85th percentile. The speed that 85 percent of the traffic is traveling at the speed limit must be set within five miles per hour,” said senior highway engineer Joe Rusiewicz.
Instead, other possibilities include adding sidewalks, rumble strips and flashing signs to get people to slow down.
“That might help solve some of the problems already that by lowering that speed a lot of the areas that are a concern now may be as big a concern,” said Rusiewicz.
Residents say they hope changes will make their roads safer.
“It’s a start. So as long as we can get the traffic down and the accidents, I think people will be safe in town,” said Booher.
Planners have yet to make their formal recommendations. Wednesday night’s session was their last meeting for public input. They will release their recommendations in the next few weeks.