Question: “The posted speed on South Orchard Street south of Fircrest used to be 40 miles per hour; it is now 35 and resumes 40 near Meadow Park Golf Course. Why the decrease on an arterial?
Also, on eastbound state Route 16, the posted speed drops to 55 miles an hour near the Pearl Street exit. That’s not the case for westbound drivers. Any good reason why? — Janice Lactaoen, Gig Harbor
Answer: Josh Diekmann, transportation engineer in the city of Tacoma’s Public Works Department, said the speed limits on portions of South Orchard Street were modified in 2011.
“The proposal to modify the speed limit was a result of the installation of a new traffic signal at South 34th Street and analysis of the speed limits along South Orchard Street, which at the time varied between 35 and 40 miles per hour,” Diekmann said.
“The speed limit modification was completed in coordination with the city of Fircrest, which maintains and owns a portion of South Orchard Street,” he said. “The speed limit on Orchard Street is now consistent from Sixth Avenue to the south city limits.”
Claudia Bingham-Baker, communications manager for the Washington State Department of Transportation’s Olympic Region, explained the differences on state Route 16 this way:
“The difference is that eastbound SR 16 drivers are driving toward the eastbound Nalley Valley construction zone,” she said.
“The reduced speed limit is a proactive measure to minimize the potential for collisions in the area.”Rob Carson: 253-597-8693 email@example.com Have a question about traffic congestion, construction, spending or other transportation issues? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, hometown and daytime telephone number. We’ll answer as many questions as we can.