Speed Busters: Group wants action taken on speeding problem in Seminole Heights neighborhood

SEMINOLE HEIGHTS, Fla. (WFLA) – The Hampton Terrace Community Association is nestled in the Seminole Heights area. They believe there is power in numbers. 65 people showed up when the city of Tampa and the Tampa Police Department joined them in support of their speeding concerns. But without solid answers to the problem, they decided to form their own Traffic Calming Committee and contacted Leslee Lacey to Speed Bust in Seminole Heights.

HTCA President Brian Frey and Vice President Bill Truett are tired of seeing cars crash through their neighbor’s fences and landing in their yards.

“I’ve had to jump out of the way of a car whenever I’ve been walking my dogs,” Truett said.

Areas of concern include Idlewild Avenue, Henry Avenue and Powhattan Avenue, along with the busy stretch of 15th Street which intersects those roads.

“I can guarantee those cars that go down 15th St., the speedometer is nowhere near that three zero.” Frey said.

So Leslee took Brian and other community members out to 15th Street between Hillsborough Avenue and Henry Avenue and began speed busting. After mostly witnessing speeds between 8 to 12 miles per hour over, (although higher speeds were recorded,) the group told Leslee she needed to return during rush hour. So Leslee returned with Brian for more speed busting.

“Whoa! Brian, Take a guess,” said Leslee.

“47?” Replied Brian.

“47!” confirmed Leslee.

Leslee continued to witness significantly more speeders on 15th Street and at higher speeds than earlier in the day. Brian was glad to have Speed Busters on the scene but realizes the city still needs to take action to on this high-speed problem.

Brian is very appreciative of the relationships between the association and the City of Tampa.

“I can’t say enough about how responsive they are to us and how communicative they are with us, which is why we formed this committee. But there has got to be solutions, and losing one’s life cannot be the catalyst for that solution.”

Leslee spoke with Jean Duncan, the Director of Transportation and Stormwater services, who said they were not aware of a speeding problem on North 15th Street. Duncan said they will complete a traffic study that will take approximately eight weeks. Leslee will be following up on the results.

Along with 15th Street, Leslee also speed busted on Idlewild Avenue at 12th Street, where she clocked a speeder at 43 miles per hour.

To help bring awareness to the speed limit, Duncan says they will be installing additional speed limit signs of 25 miles per hour on Idlewild Avenue at 12th Street, with enhanced conspicuity plaques. Last week, a 25 miles per hour word message on the pavement was repainted.

In addition to this, they are reviewing a request to install a speed feedback sign on East Idlewild Avenue, and are presenting the policies of a new pilot program to Community Presidents that uses Intersection Art to help with traffic calming.

If you have a speeding issue in your neighborhood, contact Leslee Lacey on her WFLA Facebook page and she may be able to bring Speed Busters to you!

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