Cleveland begins installing speed tables to slow drivers down neighborhood streets

Cleveland installed the first of more than a dozen speed tables to slow drivers on residential streets.

Mayor Justin Bibb and members of the Cleveland City Council introduced the first rubberized speed table — which looks like a wider, flatter speed bump — on Corlett Avenue in the Union-Miles neighborhood.

“I’ve long believed that as a community, we should always put people first over cars,” Bibb said at the Corlett press conference. “And we know that, especially in this community, we’ve seen too many deaths from cars driving too fast on our streets.”

Cleveland has seen an increase in road deaths over the past two years, part of a national increase in road deaths. In 2020 and 2021, the city experienced 74 and 73 motor vehicle fatalities, while 54 people died in accidents in 2019, according to city statistics.

As part of a pilot traffic-calming program, the city is setting up 14 rubber tables and one asphalt table in 10 locations around Cleveland, according to Calley Mersmann, City Hall’s senior transit strategist. and mobility.

The city will assess whether the tables make a difference before potentially expanding the program. When asked how many more speed tables he would like to install, Bibb replied, “As many as we can afford.”

Cleveland is also putting up 10 radar signs around the city that tell motorists how fast they are driving. The council will pay another 18 using its discretionary funds, according to the city.

Police also play an important role in the city’s efforts against speeding, Bibb said. Cleveland has invited the Ohio State Highway Patrol to help catch speeders, and the city is planning traffic stops at “hot spots,” according to the mayor.

The table on Corlett spans both lanes of the road between East 120th and East 123rd streets, one block east of John Adams College & Career Academy, a public high school. A residential street lined with bungalows and classic Cleveland two-story houses, Corlett can also serve as a passageway between two major north-south streets: East 116th and East 131st.

Although the speed limit is 25 miles per hour on Corlett, the average speed is 30, with top speeds reaching 35, depending on the city.

Ilene Jones Perry, who turns 73 this year, said she has lived in Corlett on and off since she was 12. She and her husband, Kenneth, sat on their steps as city workers removed chairs from the street after the press conference.

“I don’t even know the highest words to give,” she said.

“It’s beautiful,” her husband said.

“It’s beautiful,” she repeated. “I’m glad it finally happened. We have speeders all night, all night, all night, three, four in the morning. There are so many accidents that happen between intersections.

Two years ago, a driver pulled a stop sign on Corlett around 2:30 a.m., hitting and killing a 29-year-old motorcyclist, police told local media at the time. Later in the summer of 2020, Corlett was the site of a three car collision.

“The neighbors are happy in this neighborhood,” Ward 4 Councilwoman Deborah Gray, who represents the neighborhood, said at Thursday’s news conference. “They’ve been complaining for a while [about] do something, and now it’s done.

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