CLEVELAND — Cleveland residents like Noemi Ortiz report they are tired of living in fear due to speeding and reckless driving in their neighborhoods.
Ortiz first contacted News 5 about the issue near her home at West 25th Street and Meyer Avenue on June 30. While on the scene, a 10-year-old boy was hit by a car while riding his bike. Fortunately, the boy was not injured, but the incident punctuated her traffic safety concerns.
"They fly up and down the street, they have souped-up cars racing," Ortiz said. “They just come barreling through here, not thinking about anybody but themselves. It’s very dangerous, kids gong to school and elderly people coming out of different high rises and we got people here in wheelchairs.”
News 5 took the case to Gordon Holmes, the Cleveland Traffic Commissioner. But then on July 12 there was another incident at the intersection, after a car plowed through a building on that corner. Again, no one was injured, but the crash had Holmes responding. Holmes verified the city is in the midst of traffic speed study on along the West 25th business corridor and on Meyer Avenue.
Holmes also pointed to a citywide pilot program to install speed tables in ten key locations at the end of July. Holmes said he believes the raised rubber platforms will make a difference in slowing down drivers.
“We're doing a speed study right now on Meyer, then we're going transfer to speed study over to West 25th," Holmes said. “People are on the phone and that’s a cause for real bad things to happen, people getting hurt really bad, damage to property.”
Holmes said the speed tables are going to be a "fantastic tool" to utilize.
“As for the speed tables, they selected the 10 areas in the city base on certain criteria. You can change people’s behavior based on speed bumps or roundabouts, so I think it’s a fantastic tool that we can use," he said. "But it’s not going to be easy, I’m not promising you that we’re going to do it overnight, but with these studies and these traffic cars in place, I think we can start to turn the tide a little bit."
The streets that are included in the speed table pilot program are:
- Judson Drive (East 160th Street to Lee Road)
- Dickens Avenue (East of Larry Doby Way)
- East 147th Street (South of Bartlett Avenue)
- West 101st Street (Marginal Road to Madison Avenue)
- West 56th Street (Denison Avenue to Storer Avenue)
- Edgewater Drive (West of West 115th Street)
- East 174th Street (Ozark Avenue to Nottingham Road)
- Corlett Avenue (East of Martin Luther King Jr. Drive)
- West 50th Street (Kouba Avenue to Clark Avenue)
- Bohn Road (East 40th to Kennard Road)
Meanwhile, Cleveland's Vision Zero Initiative reported 74 traffic related fatalities in 202, and 20 traffic related deaths so far this year.