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Village board talks speed limit change

By Ben Rodgers

HOBART – The Hobart village board on Tuesday, July 3, agreed to hold a public hearing regarding a proposed speed limit change on Trout Creek Road.

The village’s Public Works Committee recommended a change to 35 mph on Trout Creek Road from North Overland to County Trunk J.

Village Administrator Aaron Kramer said the proposed change is due to a residential development, increased traffic and a hill on the road.

“The developer has approached me 40 times in the last 3 months about taking that hill out,” Kramer said. “Conversations with the village engineer say it’s not as easy as one would think… This seems to be a simpler solution to the situation.”

Director of Neighborhood Services Allyn Dannhoff said the current speed limit of 45 mph has produced some concerns from residents.

“As cars are slowing to make the turn onto the side street, often cars coming behind them don’t slow down, they just quickly pass on the side of them creating an uncomfortable feeling,” Dannhoff said.

This would be the second speed limit reduction the board has discussed this year. In February, the board rescinded a previously passed resolution to restore the speed limit to 45 mph on County J, after it moved to have it reduced to 35 mph.

“If we had to vote tonight, I’d go along with voting to reduce the speed limit,” said Rich Heidel, village president. “The only thought I have, I’m snakebitten now obviously for what we did on (County) J for a development that did not materialize.”

The board will hear public comments and then vote on the change on Aug. 7.

An additional public hearing is scheduled for the same meeting for an amendment to the village ordinance regarding outdoor use of water.

This comes on the heels of a report from Public Works/Utilities Coordinator Jerry Lancelle at the last meeting that current water usage in Centennial Centre is near capacity for the pumps that supply the development.

Lancelle said the figures are holding steady from what was previously reported, 154 gallons per minute, with the capacity at 160 gallons per minute.

The reason a public hearing is required because the board would amend the village code to put in a penalty for those who do not conserve water, in case an emergency would be declared.

“The goal is so we have the tools in place in case we need to use them,” Kramer said. “We’re trying to be proactive.”

Finally, the board agreed to limit parking to the south side of Lear Lane for the entire width of Fontaine Family Park in southern Hobart. No parking will be allowed on the north side of Lear Lane.

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