Traffic safety is imperative

Someone recently observed that Marshalltowns population is declining. There are many more reasons than lack of housing. I will put just one forward. I hear it from dozens of people every week. It will help keep current residents here as well as making our town more attractive to newcomers.

Walking and biking trails are great. New sidewalks are nice. Museums are nice. But, how about improving our quality of life by improving our safety? Show EVERYONE the city really cares.

My daughter hates coming to Marshalltown because of the horrible driving habits of the residents. Speeding is probably the biggest complaint. Even a lady I struck up a conversation with in the grocery store is appalled … and she moved here from Baltimore, Md. I can name 10-12 streets right now that need stop signs. The “speeding bullets” need slowed. Drivers stop half way through stop signs, turn signals are merely a suggestion and everyone needs to get somewhere “right now.”

I lived in Des Moines for years. I still drive there often. Vehicles have slowed down tremendously. Thanks to more patrol officers, speed cameras and unmanned vehicles. I was there at rush hour Thursday night and everyone was going the speed limit. It is amazing. I will drive there any day. My street is posted 25 mph. All day long you can clock vehicles at 40-50 mph. Sometimes higher. Many of them are commercial vehicles or people going to and from work. On Jerome, a lot are IVH employees. I would watch them come in and out of the east driveway. On West Lincolnway they are headed out of town. So, if you have a street 6-8 blocks or more with no stops then it is OK to put the hammer down? The residents I have spoken with have asked for years to have the law enforced. Never happens. There are kids near me. It shows a genuine lack of respect for others. I bet if some police officials lived on these streets it would be a different story. These are good people. Many are homeowners who pay taxes and take care of their properties. We are paying for a new police station so listen to our concerns. Make our quality of life better. I believe it is our right to be safe on our own streets. We are at risk from more than gangs or drug dealers. And citations would help with revenue.

So, add that to your list. We need big red stop signs — instead of another big red M. Success is never achieved by “WE CAN’T.”