Northside residents skeptical over city’s solution to curb speeding on Monteiro Street
Richmond Department of Public works installs rumble strips to prevent northside bridge after repeated vehicle collisions into nearby homes
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Weeks after northside resident Marilyn Joyner’s home was damaged after a vehicle crashed into it, the Richmond Department of Public Works has laid down a temporary solution to get cars to slow down.
The city installed two rumble strips on the bridge leading to Monterio Street on Wednesday. Two sets are placed about 50 feet from each other, designed to make noise when cars speed over them.
But Joyner says it hasn’t done much to stop the speeding. With her feet dangling outside her front door where her porch used to be, Joyner says she still watches as cars and buses speed down Monteiro Street.
“What we really need is something to let people know they need to slow down,” Joyner said.
Joyner says she’s been battling with the city for more than 20 years to improve the road conditions to keep cars from striking her home.
In the most recent incident, Joyner’s porch was destroyed after a vehicle slid off the road in the rain and crashed into her home. At that time, she was in the process of repairing her home after a previous incident eight months prior.
Currently, her home is being held up by wooden supports to keep the overhang from falling to the ground, and she fears it could soon be struck again. It’s why Joyner says the city’s rumble strip solution doesn’t feel like a fix.
“It’s not enough. I really don’t think it’s enough,” Joyner said. “It’s just a bandaid. I really think that they need to put some sort of flashing lights up there, and they need to put up a sign that when the ground is wet, use precaution because the last two accidents that impacted this was because the ground was wet.”
Her neighbor Michael Beiro agrees. Beiro says the last time Joyner’s home was struck, debris from her porch broke through his window at high speeds. He says he is grateful the city is giving the road much-needed attention now, but he argues they are only scratching the surface of the issue.
“It’s been a big added stress,” Beiro said. “The strips are better than nothing, but I don’t think it’s enough. You still have people flying by in both directions.”
Beiro says he’s repeatedly contacted the city and 6th District Councilwoman Ellen Robertson to devise an effective solution to improve road safety on the bridge.
“I’ve heard that DPW is planning to do some calming measures out here on the bridge in the future, and I think there is going to be a meeting on the site as well,” Biero said. “I heard about that right before the rumble strip, so that might be it, but I’m not sure.”
NBC12 reached out to a spokesperson from the city, who said DPW is continuing to look at additional road enhancements. Still, at this time, they are unsure about whether other safety improvements could be put in place. The city is also uncertain what additional signage or improvements could effectively keep motorists from speeding.
In the meantime, the city urges motorists to practice safe driving and obey the 15 mph speed limit.
But even with the guard rail, the rumble strip and speed restrictions, Joyner says speeding continues to persist. Joyner says she won’t stop speaking up until the city does something to slow these cars down to keep her and her neighbors lives and homes safe for good.
“I’m really hopeful at this point that something will be done better than what the city has already done,” Joyner said.
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