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60 mph on Hwy 56/ Pros & Cons

Let's use this blog to address issues revolving around Hwy 56 , the new 60 mph speed limit and the inordinate number of accidents that we are seeing around Baldwin. Does the new speed limit have anything to do with this rash of accidents?
Does anyone have stories to tell of "near misses" as traffic comes barreling into or out of our town? If you think the new speed limit is a good idea and like it, can you explain your reasons?
Are you worried about the Lawrence Street/Hwy 56 intersection as the new school begins construction?

Let's use this as an open format where we can discuss what is a real issue in this community that effects everyone. Everyone has an opinion so let's hear it!

June 22, 2009

Highway 56 /60mp speed limit issues

Comments

loosecaboose 5 years, 4 months ago

I really hate it being raised to 60 mph. We travel west on it several times a year, and have done so for many years even before we moved to Baldwin. Now instead of cars passing us at 60, it is now 65 and more. Here in Douglas and Osage counties there are very few shoulders to pull over on should you need to take evasive action or pull over for a law enforcement (never see them on 56) or a flat tire. I still say KDOT stands for Kansas Death Observation Team. And yes I do not like them flying low into town. I often cross Ames at eighth, and to have them coming at you even faster is not to my liking. Watching children and old folks is really scary.

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b8es 5 years, 4 months ago

60 or 55 makes no difference. I STILL get behind morons doing 45.

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greyghost 5 years, 4 months ago

I like the new speed limit. I do think that the speeds need to be lowered to 45 m.p.h. just west of the vet clinic and east of the Santa Fe Dr. intersection.

Yeah we've had some serious accidents on the thoroughfare--even a motorcycle fatality not too long ago. It usually takes a couple of fatalities to get killdots attention though.

Hate to say it but Baldwin may be getting big enough for another stop light. Eighth and Ames needs it, especially while school's in session-- there are way too many soccer moms on crack while driving their suvs.

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solo 5 years, 4 months ago

The increased speed limit is a terrible idea. I have seen numerous problems already. The biggest being the intersectin of Lawrence & Hwy 56. I regularly travel west out of Baldwin on 56. One takes one's life in their hands if you are unlucky enough to be stopped by a vehicle trying to make a left turn (south) onto Lawrence Street. You must be constantly vigilant that your car isn't violently rear-ended as they are escalating the hill after the school where they open up the engines and assume it's free saiing to Hwy 59. Wrongo. There you are---a sitting duck as these oblivious drivers come barreling at your tail at 60mph. At this point they see you stopped-waiting to make a perfectly legal turn-- they either slam on their brakes and hope for the best or go flying around you on the right shoulder nearly taking off your side view mirrors,sending gravel flying and more often than not saluting you with the middle finger.

And we are seriously considering putting a school access down this road without major changes to this crazy intersection? Are we nuts? Or just trying to save a few pennies? I have friends who live on Lawrence Street and they say it's worse than I imagine. They have seen several accidents at that intersection and always worry about their teen drivers and their inexperienced friends navigating the pitfalls of this intersection. My friends also wonder if any consideration was given to the fact that the grain elevator is right down the street. Apparently during harvest time in the fall grain trucks coming lumbering down that road oblivious to the 30mp speed limit. And there are many of them and it goes on for 2-3 months. Also Lawrence is a major north/south access road for those who live on the west end of Baldwin or who live south of town on 1600 road. There is an unbelievable amount of traffic on that road so I know there are many out there who intimately know of the perils of turning onto and off of this street to Hwy 56.

It is time for the city, county, KDOT and school district to get serious about the real safety issue here. My prediction is if nothing is done is that there will be a horrible accident there within the first few months of when the new school is open. I will pray small children won't be involved but the odds will be against that.

I have other complaints about the new speed limit but I will save those rants for another post.

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BaldwinDad 5 years, 4 months ago

I don't have too much of a problem with it, but like someone else says never fails I always get stuck behind someone doing 45.

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Gopher 5 years, 4 months ago

I know the speed limit says 60 but my brain keeps telling me to drive 55. I also agree that the Lawrence Street and 56 intersection will continue to be a problem. If you've ever tried to enter 56 from the north on E. 1600th Rd. (which is the gravel road north of Lawrence St.) or E 1400th Rd., the westbound traffic can be on you before you know it. Also the shoulders are way too narrow to warrant 60 on 56 hwy.

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hellothere 5 years, 4 months ago

I think at the top of 56, near the Lawrence Street intersection they at least need to put up a flashing yellow light much like they did on 59 HW right outside of Lawrence. (I can't think of the intersection off the top of my head)

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puck 5 years, 4 months ago

I guess I am the only one who thinks it isn't cool to pan the KDOT people working so hard making our roads safer for us in this intolerable heat. A couple have died on that job.

:(

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loosecaboose 5 years, 4 months ago

Puck, that is not the people with whom we have disgust, It is the top people of KDOT (Kansas Death Observation Team) that we have an issue with. Those people not only cave in to big money intrests, but really have little regard for the orange vested employees we see working their tails off.

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hipgrrrrl 5 years, 4 months ago

The only "near miss" I've had in that area of the intermediate school was in 2007 during the Maple Leaf Festival. Apparently, the shuttle bus drivers thought they had the right-of-way in turning onto 56 from the school's lot...and so, not once but twice, I had to slam on my brakes in order to avoid plowing my car into a bunch of Maple Leaf tourists.

In 2008, I got smarter and just avoided going in West on 56. No more near decapitations from the shuttle busses!

However, I'm with the two who state that they always get stuck behind someone going 45 :). I drive the speed limit (no more although typically no less :)) except on 56 where I always, always, always get stuck behind someone who's goin' way under the limit. Generally, I just stick to 1055 to avoid the aggravation. Of course, I probably send the drivers who want to go over 55 completely over the edge since I don't.

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arcocelli 5 years, 4 months ago

I drive east on 56 to 35 North every morning (and vice versa in the evening). The 60 mph speed has been an invitation for people to speed even farther over the limit. I get passed by cars doing 70 easily on a daily basis.

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sawman 5 years, 3 months ago

“Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?” G.C.

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loosecaboose 5 years, 2 months ago

I have noticed on my morning walks that drivers are slowing and even stopping for me at the crosswalk ever since they repainted it. How nice it is and I always try to wave them a thank you. But I do stand real still on the sidewalk when the big rigs blast through.

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