Local resident hopes for more road improvements.
+Some improvements made, more needed
Thank you for your article Oct. 17 in the East County Observer (A Land of Wonder ... and a few worries). Since your article, improvements have been made on two dangerous turns on Rangeland Parkway, one in front of the The Sheridan and another just east of that where there is a turn-off onto a newly opened road. The bushy grasses that were so high and obstructed the view of turning vehicles has been removed, which was an improvement. But there still needs to be improvement in many other areas and eventually Stop signs and crosswalks, along with other traffic calming measures, need to be added.
People are flying down these roads 20 mph or more over the speed limit in most cases. Development is booming and it's only going to get worse. There are other intersections that are very concerning, with the biggest for me personally being the Malachite Drive and the Central Park Drive/New Haven Boulevard intersection as you leave the Central Park Development. Coming out of the Central Park gate onto Malachite either crossing over the intersection to New Haven Blvd or making a left turn especially is a perfect setup for a serious accident or fatality. I already have come upon two bad accidents there. One guy's vehicle was totaled and jumped the curb onto the sidewalk on the opposite corner a few weeks ago.
People are speeding both west and east directions (on Malachite). The speed limit is 35 mph and there are people going 50 mph plus. In addition to speeding vehicles, another factor are those big bushy shrubs on the center dividers that seriously obstruct view. I almost got t-boned by a teenager driving a low sport car that I was not able to see through the cover of the bushes while I was trying to cross the intersection. You have to stop in the middle of the intersection which leaves you vulnerable.
There are teens coming from the high school in vehicles and crossing on foot. There are children and adults riding bikes and trying to cross there. Just yesterday a 10-year-old boy with a back pack was waiting to cross there.
Before someone gets seriously injured or killed, I propose immediately the shrubs be removed and to make it a four-way stop with painted crosswalks and blinking yellow lights. We need pedestrian crossing alerts there and any other traffic calming measure that can be provided. I did call Manatee County and report it. A gentleman there told me he would report it but that the Lakewood Ranch Planning and Development was responsible.
Yes the beautiful flora and shrubs are nice, but people's lives were not considered in the planning of these roads. There are many other obstructed intersections and the shrubbery needs to be removed. Another busy one is behind LA Fitness and the Residences on the Green Apartments. Just take a drive around the area in the morning with school dropoff and everyone coming and going. There is a big need for traffic calming measures, remove the shrubs and put crosswalks and signs.
I don't want to see that someone was seriously injured or killed there either on foot, bike or vehicle. Can you please help by bringing it to light in your Around the Ranch columns?
Thanks for your continued consideration of the community.