Private and gated communities attract people seeking increased safety and security. But speeding vehicles can threaten that safety and endanger the lives of pedestrians, cyclists, and young children. Here is a guide to help you work with your community to create safer, more livable streets.
9 Easy Steps to Safer Roads:
Assess the problem. Speak to neighbors; find out if others are concerned about speeding as well. Decisions in private communities are usually made based on majority votes, so rally your friends and neighbors to get involved in improving the safety of local roads.
Identify when, where, and why speeding is happening. Try to observe what times speeding is an issue and on which roads in your community. Consider where these cars are headed and what motivates their dangerous behavior.
Evaluate risk factors. Private communities are often home to vulnerable populations such as young children, pets, and the elderly. Why are safer roads particularly critical in your community?
Research solutions to improve safety in your community. Consider the importance of including each of the three E’s of safer roads: Education, engineering, and enforcement. Don’t limit yourself to any one option- include information on educational campaigns, speed humps, speed cushions, radar signs, and speed cameras.
Prepare a presentation with all the information you’ve gathered. Include data on what the problem is, how residents feel about it, details you’ve gathered about speeding behavior, and the risk factors in your community.
Notify the board that you’d like to present information about road safety and traffic calming options at the next HOA meeting. Convey the importance of this issue to community residents.
Encourage your neighbors to attend the upcoming meeting. Your presentation will be stronger if there are others who back you up and agree that change is needed.
Present your findings calmly, clearly, and confidently. Discuss various options and convey the importance of taking action, including educating residents about the importance of slowing down. Remember that ultimately decisions will be made by majority opinion. Make sure the board and your neighbors are well informed so they can best address this issue.
Follow up and express gratitude. If you don’t hear back from the board, make sure to follow up on your appeal. Request a further meeting if no action is being taken. When progress is made, and a traffic calming plan is underway, make sure to thank the board for protecting your families and friends.