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Plan for speed tables on Woodrow Avenue reconsidered

A plan to put two speed tables on Woodrow Avenue has been altered after town leaders discovered the traffic calming devices could cause major drainage problems.
Members of the Jonesborough Traffic Advisory Committee, in the past, had approved the plan to install the speed tables after a traffic study was conducted in the area.
“The traffic counts did indicate there’s a lot more traffic on (Woodrow Avenue) than you would imagine,” Bob Browning, town administrator, said during a July 25 meeting of the Traffic Advisory Committee.
Crews had intended to install the two speed tables — both between South Cherokee Street and First Avenue — earlier this year at the same time they put in several speed tables on Main Street.
However, further review of the plan revealed the potential issue with drainage.
“Once we put the speed tables up, we would start trapping water,” explained Todd Wood, engineer. “We’re going to start sending concentrated water onto somebody else unless we do drainage repair. If we’re going to put these out there, we need to put a drainage system there, too.”
The committee was presented with three options: move on with the plan for two speed tables, but also create storm drains and catch basins along with the speed tables; reduce the number of speed tables to just one, which can be placed at a slight high point in the road in front of 200 Woodrow Ave. and would require no additional work; or do nothing to slow traffic because of the potential, unintended drainage issues that could arise.
“I’m okay with just one,” said Jeff Dupre, a Traffic Advisory Committee member and resident of Woodrow Avenue. “That would probably resolve a lot of the issues.”
Committee member Jimmy Rhein made a motion to install just one speed table located in the middle of the road. But fellow committee member Dr. William Kennedy wasn’t sold just yet.
“Why not do the two with the drainage,” he asked. “I haven’t heard anything that it has been ruled out because of (additional expense). Has it?”
The plan to stick with two speed tables and construct a better drainage system has not been taken off the table, Browning explained, but would probably not occur this fiscal year.
“If we undertake that project, we’re talking about quite a bit of tile and curbing,” Browning said. “I think it’s realistic to say it’s not going to happen tomorrow.”
Noting that the single speed table would not be too expensive, Browning said the project could be completed much sooner if that option was chosen.
“I do think Woodrow deserves some attention,” Browning added. “You do have quite a bit of traffic there.”
Following the discussion, the committee unanimously approved the new plan for a single speed table. The work will also include the widening of the narrow road where it intersects with First and Second avenues.