Letter: Time to reduce speeds in Bush Point area

Editor,

The Island County Tourism committee announced that the uptick in visitors bodes well for Island’s overall economic recovery; good for businesses and for tax dollars. Our beautiful island is attractive for the greater Seattle area, so a daytrip with the ferry, a visit to Langley, to one of the state parks, maybe a stopover in Coupeville, and crossing Deception Pass into Skagit Valley.

The yearly returning marathon walk in July and an organized bicycle event in August occupy long stretches along State Route 525, and with increased construction and tourism, the invited traffic is a burden for the lacking infrastructure of Island County.

Another example is the Smugglers Cove – Bush Point Road corridor where traffic and speed have increased tremendously. The TracPark community, with 63 houses, is suffering from this aggravated traffic situation. On a stretch of 200 yards with sharp curves in the road, we count six side roads and many entrances from driveways.

With the default, though faulty, speed limit at 50 mph, it is almost impossible to emerge safely from one’s driveway or empty your mailbox at the side of the road. That speed coupled with driver inattention presents a great hazard to islanders who walk along Bush Point Road. Let’s not forget the frequent deer fatalities, and real and nearly-so rear end collisions caused by excess speed as well, especially worsened by the blind curves approaching the neighborhoods.

We have called and petitioned the county two years ago, with over one hundred signatures from our neighborhood and sister community Bush Point Terrace, for a 40 mph speed limit. We have heard nothing from the county at all.

Wim Gottenbos

Freeland

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