South Young Street will have a new speed limit after the city voted Jan. 21 to approve a resolution raising the limit from 25 to 30 miles per hour.Before the board voted on Resolution #21-559, which would officially change the speed limit, not only for the entirety of South Young Street but also for the portion of Hickory Valley Road that stretches from the Winding Lane intersection to the city limits, alderman Hoyt Jones asked city administrator Brad Hennessee what led to the decision of increasing the limit to 30 miles per hour rather than the originally proposed 35.
“In house conversations,” was Hennessee’s easy response, but he quickly followed that with explanations of those conversations.
Hennessee said he asked representatives from both the Tennessee Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Transportation Assistance Program, which provides engineering services for cities, to come and visit the area and make their recommendations.
“We mentioned in the board meeting originally that sight distances and breaking distances all played into those [decisions],” Hennessee reminded the board members. “South Young Street is very dense. It has a lot of driveways and intersecting streets. It’s got two hills.”
Hennessee said he also used an online software program, US Limits, which is used by the Federal Highway Administration to set speed limits, to get another recommendation.
“Based on all those conversations, plus the US Limits, everybody came back with that 30 mph limit, both from site visits and the computer program,” he explained.
Mayor Jeff Young, along with Jones, commended Hennessee on the effort he put into the extensive study.
“It’s important to keep all factors - safety, speed, etc. - in mind,” Young said.
The board ultimately approved the speed limit change with a unanimous vote.