Daphne considers lowering Main Street speed limit again

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DAPHNE – Vehicles going through downtown Daphne may soon have to slow down under a proposal being studied by the City Council.

The council is considering a plan to drop the 35-mile-an hour-speed limit on the street to 25 miles an hour through the downtown area. Officials will discuss the proposal at a public hearing on Dec. 2.

Councilman Ron Scott said the council considered lowering the speed limit several years ago. The action was rescinded when city officials found they had not followed all the procedures needed to change an ordinance and the former speed limit was restored.

Scott said a public hearing would allow all residents to express their opinions.

“I think if you have a public hearing and you’re going to have people from both sides and they can hear the safety concerns that we hear every month about near misses and it’s not that long an area from school to school,” he said.

Under the proposal, the speed limit would be 25 miles an hour from a location near W.J. Carroll Elementary School in the south to Daphne Elementary School in the north, a distance of about 1.5 miles.

Residents have addressed earlier meetings of the Daphne City Council about downtown. In September, one woman told council members that her elementary school age son was almost hit by a car while crossing a street on his way to school.

Scott said a study by Architects Southwest recommended that Daphne reduce the speed limit on Main Street as one way to deal with traffic problems.

Councilwoman Angie Phillips said the proposal has been discussed several times by the Public Safety Committee.

“In our meeting minutes, Public Safety Committee meeting last month, when I asked what we need to do to make that happen,” she said. “The mayor said we need to be go back to the ordinance committee. Councilman Scott said we needed to have a public hearing.”