Morrison officials to tackle pedestrian safety, noise

Deb Hurley Brobst
dbrobst@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 1/19/23

Pedestrian safety and curbing excessive noise are two areas the Morrison trustees want to focus on, especially since those issues were brought up numerous times in a survey of town residents and businesses.

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Morrison officials to tackle pedestrian safety, noise

Posted

Pedestrian safety and curbing excessive noise are two areas the Morrison trustees want to focus on, especially since those issues were brought up numerous times in a survey of town residents and businesses.

At a meeting to discuss the survey results on Jan. 18, trustees decided to ask Police Chief Bill Vinelli to create a traffic safety and noise enforcement comprehensive plan. They also asked for data on the locations where Morrison police are writing speeding tickets.

“I feel the chief can really make an impact for us,” Mayor Chris Wolfe said. “I think we need more (speeding) enforcement in town where we live, especially on Highway 8.”

Trustees also suggested that speed enforcement should be more prevalent on Highway 74 through downtown and Highway 93 because slower vehicles will help pedestrians feel safer walking along town roads.

“Pedestrian safety ties into traffic enforcement,” Trustee Paul Sutton said. “We need to get people to slow down, and we need to encourage the (police) chief to do traffic enforcement to slow down cars.”

Morrison officials sent a survey to residents and businesses within the approximately 2-square-mile town limits. Fifty-four community members and eight business owners responded. The survey asked wide-ranging questions about what the community liked and disliked about the town, with many respondents saying they enjoyed living in Morrison.

However, when asked what was the biggest challenge facing Morrison today, three specifically mentioned speeding and pedestrian safety, while eight said quality of life would be improved by investing in pedestrian safety through trails and sidewalks, and reducing traffic speed.

Trustees agreed that the town was addressing many pedestrian safety concerns and wanted to communicate that to residents, especially since it was a hot-button topic for many. They plan to put information in the Hogback, the town’s newsletter.

To help with pedestrian safety, the town is planning to build a trail along Highway 8 from Canyon Vista Drive to Red Rocks Vista Drive, hoping to eventually create a path to make the Morrison Natural History Museum more accessible to pedestrians.

Morrison also will be installing flashing crosswalk beacons, one on Highway 8 at Red Rocks Vista Drive and one on the west end of town by the Philips 66 gas station.

It appears the town will not be purchasing a speed-enforcement van as it had hoped because it is too expensive, and ticket revenue would not pay for it. However, town officials continue to look at that option and others.

Curbing excessive noise

Trustees said enforcing the noise ordinance can be difficult, but it was a quality-of-life issue for some residents.

“It’s a through-town thing,” Wolfe said. “We can look at the warnings being issued and see what (Vinelli) is going to propose to add to enforcement.”

In the community survey, of the 54 community respondents, 23 said noise from traffic was a moderate or major problem. Of the respondents, 29 said the town should increase enforcement of the noise ordinance by police ticketing more violators, and 28 said the town should consider acquiring noise-detection equipment so it could issue more citations.

Sutton said the survey showed that the town wasn’t fixing the problem.

“We can’t continue to kick the can down the road,” he added.

In past years, the town had electronic signs along Bear Creek Avenue in the downtown area in the summer months to remind motorists of the noise ordinance.

Trustee Katie Gill said maybe the town could tie enforcement to equipment on motorcycles and vehicles rather than using decibel meters.

“We have a lot of people who live in places during the summer where they can’t have a conversation on the deck or in the yard because it’s so loud,” she said. “We need to have some degree of enforcement.”

 

Morrison Town Board, Morrison trustees, noise ordinance, speeding, pedestrian safety

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