Monday, May 21, 2018
Transportation

Speed limit on Third St. S in St. Pete drops to 25 mph

Please update those of us living in and around the Old Southeast neighborhood as to why the speed limit was lowered from 30 to 25 mph on Third Street from 22nd Avenue S to Sixth Avenue S. The speed limit has been 30 mph for the last 40 years that I know about, and this change just happened this past week or so with no notice to area residents. Third Street S is the only north/south road for people traveling from the southeast area through downtown and on north. Fourth Street has been under construction for many months now, closing the northbound lane at the Salt Creek bridge, forcing northbound traffic onto Third Street, our only major route, unless people want to travel out of their way west. Why the lower speed limit?

Paxton Barnett

Third Street S is officially designated as a local road and because it runs through both a residential area and part of the University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus (just north of "thrill hill," which crosses Salt Creek), the safety of residents and students is a concern. Increased traffic volume and vehicles blowing through the neighborhood at high speeds have residents on edge.

"Working with the local neighborhood association and USF, we have amended the neighborhood traffic plan to lower the speed limit to 25 mph, reflecting the neighborhood/campus characteristics," Mike Frederick, the city's transportation manager, wrote in an email last week.

Frederick noted that Fourth Street between Fourth and Fifth avenues S has recently been converted to a two-way operation, which allows motorists approaching from the southeast to access I-175 without having to use Third Street S once the Salt Creek construction work is done.

Was there ever any military action on 30th Avenue and 12th Street N? There seem to be a bunch of bomb craters in the street when heading east on 30th. I try to avoid them, but it is now impossible. Are they planning to resurface 30th Avenue in that section soon?

Frank Baptie

The good news is that the roadway is scheduled to be repaved, but the not-so-great news is that it's not scheduled until 2015-2016.

The repaving will be paid for by federal dollars as part of the bicycle lane improvement project.

In the meantime, part of 30th Avenue N was repaired last week and the city's stormwater operations crew is in the process of checking the drainage piping under the roadway to determine if additional repairs are needed to prevent more problems, according to Tom Gibson, the city's engineering director.

Let's hope the road holds up for two or three more years.

Email Dr. Delay at [email protected], or follow Dr. Delay on Twitter @AskDrDelay.

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