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Council lowers speed

MONMOUTH — Monmouth City Council unanimously approved lowering the speed limit on Church Street West between Monmouth Avenue North and Stadium Drive North, and on Stadium between Monmouth and Church from 25 mph to 20 mph.

The request to consider the change came from Monmouth Councilor Darin Silbernagel on behalf of Western Oregon University, who also works as the director of business services at WOU. Silbernagel voted yes on the council decision.

According to staff notes provided by City Manager Scott McClure, the university cites increased safety and consistency with the posted speed on Monmouth Avenue North through campus as important considerations for the request.

Monmouth Police Department records show no accidents or speeding tickets issued in the last five years in the affected areas, Chief Darrell Tallan said.

Cities are allowed to lower a statutory speed by 5 mph under certain circumstances, said Dorothy Upton, regional traffic director at the Oregon Department of Transportation.

Local road authorities may lower the speed limit if the road is in a residence district, has an average volume of fewer than 2,000 cars per day, more than 85 percent of which are traveling less than 30 mph; and there is a traffic control device on the highway that indicates the presence of pedestrians or bicyclists.

McClure said the area is a mix of campus uses, including “stadium features, ball fields and various forms of student housing.”

The city has not conducted a recent traffic study, McClure said, noting the last transportation plan for the figures for how many vehicles travel those areas.

The roads have multiple cross walks and a bike lane to indicate pedestrian and bicycle traffic, McClure said.

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