New Development Raises Traffic Concerns

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The more people you get, the more cars you have, and with more cars you get more accidents. That's the situation residents in western Boone County are facing.

A series of accidents have happened on the same stretch of road over the past few weeks. Some people who live along that road say it's only going to get worse. Residents who live along Spring Creek Road say Wednesday’s rollover accident at the Shaw intersection is nothing new.

“There was one on Olsen and Spring Creek the day before. I witnessed another one at Lyford and Spring Creek just two weeks ago. It's getting to be common and dangerous," says Angela Horvath.

Karen Nelson lives right on Spring Creek near the Boone County border. She says pulling in and out of her driveway is even getting dangerous.

Resident Eve Zahrndt adds, "There's only stop signs two-ways and you just have to wait for your moment to get out onto Spring Creek.”

With several new developments in the works, neighbors say these traffic hazards will only get worse. They worry even more subdivisions will be built without the proper infrastructure.

"They have no plan. They have no idea what's going to happen. Everyone is just so concerned with bringing in new development, but they're not concerned with dealing with the infrastructure to deal with the development," says Nelson.

The Belvidere Township Highway Department says roads have been widened; newer and bigger stop signs have been installed. Brush has also been trimmed back.

"The drivers are going to have to take more responsibility of their driving habits,” says Richard Lee, road commissioner.

Lee says reducing speed limits along Spring Creek from 55 to 45 mph may be another possible solution. That would have to be done through the county. Residents say it sounds like a good idea.

"You can have all the stop signs and speed limit signs you want, but if there's no one here to enforce it, people just travel the rate they can,” says Nelson.

Neighbors have started meeting formally and plan on continuing talks with the county and township to drive home their point that something more needs to be done.

A speed study for the intersection of Spring Creek and Shaw Roads is on the agenda for this fall. Working with the Highway Department, the Sheriff's Department will monitor traffic to see if reducing the speed limit is needed.