Lawrence Township officials are going to look into the possibility of installing speed humps – raised mounds of asphalt – on Puritan Avenue as a means of slowing down motorists who speed.
More than two dozen Puritan Avenue residents signed a petition asking municipal officials to install speed humps because their street has become a popular shortcut between Brunswick Pike and Ohio Avenue.
“There has been a growing problem on our street that is extremely dangerous for our children, and is now increasingly worse since the City of Trenton built housing and condos on New York Avenue at the bottom of Pear Street,” according to the petition.
The petition states that speed humps have been installed on Pear Street, “more than likely for the same reason” that the Puritan Avenue residents want the traffic calming devices. Both streets are “through” streets to New York Avenue.
Cars and trucks that use Puritan Avenue often ignore the stop sign at the intersection of Puritan and Ohio avenues, according to the petition, which states that motorists travel at a high rate of speed on Puritan Avenue, which puts children at risk.
“We all feel this is detrimental, and it is imperative that something gets done about this problem before it’s too late and something bad happens,” the petition states.
Municipal Manager Kevin Nerwinski said when a request is made for speed humps, the municipal engineer is asked to consider the request and review the necessity for them.
“A part of that process is for the police department to perform a speed assessment study, which tracks the traffic and speed of vehicles using the road,” Nerwinski said.
The police rely on the 85th percentile parameter as a basis to determine whether a speed device is needed, he said. That means if 85 percent of the vehicles are traveling within a certain “miles per hour” of the posted speed limit, there would be no cause for further methods of controlling the speed, he said.
But the percentile factor is only one factor in reaching a decision, Nerwinski said. Other factors include whether there is a school on the street and whether there are children who live in the area who cross the street, he said.