BY JON CALL, CITY MANAGER/ATTORNEY
Resident’s Question: How Does the City Establish Speed Limits and Traffic Controls?
Answer: Some questions have come up recently asking if the city can install traffic signals, stop signs, or modify speed limits throughout the city. In general, the standard speed limit is 25 mph for all roads unless indicated otherwise. Most of the larger roadways are faster speeds, though occasionally some roads are still 25 mph. The reason the city is not able to install four-way stop signs at all intersections is that some individuals have actually won lawsuits against cities where they installed stop signs which were not warranted by the traffic numbers. I know that sounds weird, but the courts basically said traffic control, including speed limits, must follow a strict interpretation of the traffic codes, meaning cities lose discretion in installing/implementing four-way stops and speed limits. The ultimate decision is left to the Police Department as they apply the appropriate traffic criteria as handed down by the Utah State rules and laws. Changes are based upon studies of traffic movements and speeds. It is not that, the city doesn’t want to be responsive to concerns, we are simply required to follow state rules regarding traffic control.
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