Rehoboth residents demand stop sign

Country Club Estates homeowners want to reduce speeding

By Ryan Mavity

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Cape Gazette Septenber 18, 2012

Rehoboth Beach residents are calling for a stop sign to slow traffic in their neighborhood.

Country Club Estates home­owners have asked the Rehoboth Beach commissioners for a stop sign at Stockley and Hickman streets to curtail speeding.

Tom Zellers, president of the Country Club Estates Home Owners’ Association told the city’s streets and transportation committee, “We’re tired of it. I’ve been sitting on people’s porches, and you’ll see them just zoom right up the street. The speed is the issue. I don’t know how to get it through to you people or this city. We want a stop sign.”

Zeller said the homeowners have been asking for a stop sign for two years and have received no response.

He said when people see a de­vice in the road, they will slow down. Zellers said most people in the area are for a stop sign, but one resident did not want it and killed the idea.

Commissioner Pat Coluzzi told Zellers at the committee’s Sept. 7 meeting to bring the peti­tion in to the committee so they could discuss and recommend a stop sign to the city commission­ers. Traffic data collected by the Rehoboth Beach Police Depart­ment near 318 Hickman St. from Aug. 2 to Aug. 8 show 9,308 cars went through that intersection in both directions. Chief Keith Banks said the average speed was 22 mph, with the high speed recorded at 54 mph.

A second six-day test at the same location, from Aug. 9 to Aug. 15, showed 8,405 cars with an average speed of 22 mph.

Two tests were also conducted near 310 Munson St. The first, from Aug. 15 to Aug. 22, showed 12,386 vehicles going an average of 24 mph. The second test, from Aug. 22 to Aug. 29, found 10,260 cars going an average speed of 25 mph.

Banks said he was not sur­prised by the number of cars go­ing though the area.

Commissioner and committee member Bill Sargent said, “It would seem to me the speed data we have here on Hickman would probably argue against putting any additional signs, at least to control speed.”

Committee member Kathy Os­terholm said she was not in favor of another stop sign.

Zellers said speeding data is skewed because people see the traffic data device and think it is a speed monitor, so they slow down.

He also complained there are as many trucks going through Country Club Estates as on Re­hoboth Avenue. Banks con­curred that a lot of trucks go through the neighborhood.

“This is not a business area. When you have 9,000 cars com­ing down the street in a residen­tial area in six days, you have a lot of traffic,” Zellers said.

After the meeting, Zellers said motorists, particularly heavy trucks, have been using Hickman and Munson as an alternate to Rehoboth Avenue, increasing the traffic volume. He said trucks be­long on Rehoboth Avenue and suggested the city possibly man­date a separate time for deliver­ies or not allowing trucks on res­idential streets.

Zellers said 60 property own­ers have signed the stop-sign pe­tition. Country Club Estates resi­dent Barry Brandt, who lives near the intersection of Stockley and Hickman, said homeowners agreed to request a sign not al­lowing commercial trucks on Munson and Hickman, as well as painting crosswalks and adding an in-road traffic control device, sometimes known as a silent po­liceman.

“The people in Country Club Estates have had it. This is a resi­dential community, it's not Route 1,” Zellers said.

“We live here. Sure, it’s nice to have people come here and vaca­tion, but you have to respect the people that live here.”