Kaysville residents fed up with 'cut-through' residential traffic

Wednesday , July 02, 2014 - 11:44 AM

Kaysville Meeting

A poster board sign was shared with the Kaysville City Council by resident Blake Webster. Webster...

KAYSVILLE — The poster board reading “No Thru Traffic Resident Only” that resident Blake Webster showed the Kaysville City Council pretty well sums up the sentiment of those living on Barnes Drive.

Webster, along with some of his neighbors, approached council members Tuesday in an effort to get them to close off their street to “cut-through” traffic by installing a cul-de-sac near where Barnes Drive intersects with Flint Street on the west side of the city.

Despite the pleas -- which council members and Mayor Steve Hiatt recognized as being legitimate -- city officials believe there is a due diligence that must be followed by looking at other measures to resolve the issue. They said closing the street at one end would set a precedence that other neighborhood groups might make the same request.

City leaders also don’t want to cause other problems of cut-through traffic in other neighborhoods that might be diverted if they were to close the gap on Barnes Drive.

The council did agree to conduct a traffic count of those vehicles cutting through the narrow 25 mph per hour street, and install temporary speed bumps.

The immediate concern of residents, despite an increased law enforcement presence in the area, Webster said, is the safety of their grandchildren and children. He said vehicles, some traveling as fast as 40 mph, use Barnes Drive in making their way from Flint Street to 200 North and back again.

“The blood of a child is a high price to pay for a cul-de-sac,” Webster told the council. “How is Kaysville harmed by a cul-de-sac on Barnes Drive?”

Hiatt supports an incremental approach to solving the problem, something city leaders can defend should they have to set precedence in closing the road.

“The tendency of the council is to do the right thing,” Hiatt said.

The last time Webster and his group came before the council, the two sides agreed to having signs posted along Barnes Drive reading “Local Traffic Only.”

Webster contends those signs have done little to deter cut-through traffic. He said “Local Traffic Only” is something that can be “broadly interpreted,” with motorists from as far away as Bountiful rationalizing they are local traffic.

Residents also complained about how the volume of traffic on the road has disrupted the serenity of the neighborhood.

“I’m sad that the cut-through traffic has become unbearable,” said Dianne Webster, wife of Blake Webster.

Hiatt said it is the council’s hope to have an update on the situation at its July 15 council meeting.

"If it is not moving fast enough,” Webster said of the solutions, “my neighbors will remind me.”

City engineer Andy Thompson told the council Tuesday that the temporary speed bumps have been ordered.

In the meantime, the city through its monthly newsletter will encourage motorists to be more courteous and watchful of children when driving through residential neighborhoods.

Councilman Ron Stephens said reminding Kaysville residents of who they are should help. But his concern is that the traffic situation residents are experiencing on the west side of the city is only going to be worse.

Kaysville Police Chief Sol Oberg told the Standard-Examiner police are doing what they can in enforcing the speed limit in that area, but he points out a lot of residential development has occurred on the west side of the city.

Contact reporter Bryon Saxton at 801-625-4244 or bsaxton@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @BryonSaxton.

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