Raymond Community News

Reduced Speed Limits Planned for Downtown Raymond
by Penny Williams    4-21-16

Residents of Raymond will see new speed limits downtown in the near future. New signs will display a 25 miles-per-hour speed limit, an effort to make the downtown area safer for drivers and pedestrians. The previous speed limit is 30 mph.

The roads where the speed limit will be reduced to 25 mph are:

• Main Street - near old post office inbound to the Common, and Pecker Bridge inbound to the Common.
• Epping Street - from 26 Epping St., inbound to the Common.
• Wight Street.
• Old Manchester Road, from the Lamprey River Elementary School inbound to the Common.
• Floral Avenue.
• Moulton Street.
• Orchard Street.
• Church Street.
• Horseshed Road.

Raymond Police Chief David Salois said the Raymond Highway Safety Committee made the decision to reduce the speed limit. He said the Committee “dealt with complaints about speeding vehicles and traffic downtown. Ernie Creveling, Community Planning and Development Director, has been re-developing downtown to be more accessible and business oriented.  This will enhance safety for the pedestrian public in the downtown."

Salois said the Town is targeting the beginning of May for the change to become effective.

In presenting the proposed change to the Board of Selectmen in September 2015, Salois acknowledged his department has received complaints about speeding but noted that based on a study and analysis done in the summer of 2015, it appears most people obey the posted speed limit. However, changes in the downtown layout over the years have increased pedestrian and bicycle traffic and general congestion, and decreased sight lines at some intersections in the area.

On Sept. 14, 2015 Salois and Steve Brewer, Public Works director, presented the selectmen with a first reading of the proposed speed limit change and offered background on traffic speeds. They noted that the Highway Safety Committee had held several meetings regarding changing speed limits for the downtown area. They said the idea is that reducing the speed through the center of town and the surrounding streets would make the downtown safer for pedestrians and hopefully increase businesses in the area.

Selectwoman Colleen West Coates proposed an amendment to the proposed draft to include the new speed limit on Old Manchester Road from the end of the elementary school zone to Wight Street.  The amendment was unanimously approved.

At the selectmen’s meeting of Sept. 28, 2015, a public hearing on the proposed speed limit change was held and resident Carolyn Matthews asked the number and cost of signs needed for the change. Brewer said they estimate around $75 per sign, with a total cost of about $500.

Following the hearing, the Selectmen unanimously approved the speed limit change.

Of the change in speed limit, Salois said the new speed would "be a benefit to the downtown area and will further benefit the safety of pedestrians and the motoring public in the downtown."

The decision by the Board of Selectmen to authorize the speed limit change is governed by State RSA 265:63.















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