City Council to consider using 'speed bumps' on neighborhood streets

By Bob Robinson


   Using speed bumps and other techniques in residential neighborhoods to make streets safer will be discussed at the regular meeting of the Elizabethton City Council at 7 p.m. Thursday at City Hall, 136 S. Sycamore St., Elizabethton.
   Speed bumps, a "traffic calming device," are part of the Neighborhood Traffic Management Program (NTMP) recommended by the Elizabethton Planning Commission. The previous City Council deferred acting on the NTMP when it was presented to them.
   Emergency response times by Elizabethton Fire Department and Carter County Rescue Squad may be adversely affected by speed bumps.
   "Longer fire vehicles and equipment, such as ladder trucks, may have trouble negotiating horizontal devices. Studies have shown that traffic calming devices may slow (emergency) response times up to 10 seconds per device.
   "Traffic calming techniques work best when incorporated into a neighborhood traffic management program...creating safer and more livable neighborhoods throughout the City of Elizabethton," the NTMP plan stated.
   In other action, Council will consider:
   * Development of a Veterans War Memorial Park in City Park, Elk Avenue and Pine Street. The memorial will honor all veterans in World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War and Desert Storm;
   * Approving proclamations setting Saturday, Nov. 10, Elizabethton Soccer Association Appreciation Day; setting Friday, Nov. 9, as Baughman Manufacturing U-8 Cobras Day in recognition of the 2001 Championship Soccer Team; recognizing October 30 as Weatherization Assistance Day;
   * Appointing two members to the Planning Commission and Zoning Appeals Board; appointing three members to the Personnel Advisory Board;
   * Adopting a resolution establishing a "formal policy" on uniform rules for bids, contracts and agreements entered into on behalf of the City of Elizabethton;
   * Adopting an ordinance revising fines and costs in City Court "comparable to area municipal court fines and costs";
   * Approving a budget amendment requested by the Elizabethton Airport to reinstate $170,000 funds rolled over into a fund balance previously approved for airport runway extension;
   * Approving the expenditure of approximately $60,000 to purchase a video camera for the Wastewater Treatment Division of Elizabethton Public Works Department;
   * Approving bids to demolish a structure at 809 N. Main Street, acquired under the flood grant and recommended by the City Planning and Development Department;
   * Adopting a resolution transferring ownership of the historic train owned by the City of Elizabethton to the Elizabethton/Carter County Chamber of Commerce;
   * Approving bids and purchases, totaling $134,280, of which $38,416 is for bulk rock salt for use by the Street Department this winter.
   Members of City Council are Mayor Sam LaPorte, Vice Mayor Sam Shipley, Nancy Alsup, Pat "Red" Bowers, Janie McKinney, Diane Morris and Richard Sammons.