Hamilton Boulevard options considered

January 21, 1998|By JULIE E. GREENE

Hamilton Boulevard options considered

Staff Writer

A four-way stop, eliminating parking spaces and lowering the speed limit are options Hagerstown City Council members are considering to slow drivers on Hamilton Boulevard.

A public hearing will be held on the matter Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the council's regular meeting at City Hall.

Officials said they would distribute flyers in the neighborhood to help make residents aware of the hearing.

Three options are being considered to slow drivers and make the intersections safer. They are:

* Increase enforcement of the 30 mph speed limit.

* Install a four-way stop sign at Magnolia Avenue.

* Lower the speed limit to 25 mph and increase sight distance from the intersections by eliminating several parking spaces.

City Engineer Bruce Johnson recommended the last option, but some council members said they want to try a four-way stop sign.


Engineering personnel were opposed to putting a three-way stop sign at South Prospect and West Baltimore streets, but doing so has improved traffic on South Prospect Street, said Councilwoman Susan Saum-Wicklein, speaking as a resident of that street.

Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II proposed four-way stops on Hamilton Boulevard at the intersections with Magnolia Avenue and Hillcrest Road.

There have been at least 11 accidents since 1993 at the Magnolia Avenue intersection, city officials said.

Saum-Wicklein and Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said they liked the four-way stop idea.

Councilman Alfred W. Boyer disagreed, saying four-way stop signs make it difficult to get around town.

Metzner said Hamilton Boulevard shouldn't be used as a thoroughfare through the North End of town. Oak Hill and Potomac avenues are wider streets and can better handle the larger traffic volume.

Councilman J. Wallace McClure said he prefers increased enforcement.

If the third option were chosen, 26 parking spaces along Hamilton Boulevard would be lost, according to the engineering department. Those spaces are near the intersections with Magnolia, Hillcrest, Country Club Road, Cypress Street, Irvin Avenue and Park Lane.

To improve the view for drivers from intersections while keeping the speed limit at 30 mph, 50 parking spaces would be eliminated.

Councilman William M. Breichner said a lowered speed limit won't do any good if it's not enforced.

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