‘Big rig’ traffic again discussed by Mboro Council
Published 8:28 am Thursday, June 11, 2015
By TIM FLANAGAN
MURFREESBORO – For the second time in as many meetings, the Murfreesboro Town Council listened to citizen complaints about heavy truck traffic on Main Street.
In another issue, discussion centered on those town residents who have jobs as truckers and the parking of those big rigs within residential areas.
During the public form of the Town Council’s most recent meeting, local resident and business owner Laurie Brook talked about the consistent problem of commercial truck traffic along Main Street during all hours of the day and night. Brook suggested by lowering the speed limit to 20 mph it would discourage these big rigs from using Main Street as a short cut through the town.
She said that suggestion would also allow bicycle riders to use the street for travel instead of the sidewalk.
Brook stated the truck problem is “out of control.” Her point was well validated by Councilman Randy Roberts who stated that, “we once sat on our porch and in two hours counted over five dozen trucks go by.”
Murfreesboro Mayor John Hinton supported the thought of a lower speed limit and admitted the trucks now have a different way to travel (using the US 158/258 bypass).
Brook also supported “Local Truck Traffic Only” signs to be considered on Main Street.
In a forum statement on April 30 from the NCDOT to Murfreesboro resident and business owner Teresa Flanagan, it said, “At one time the NCDOT established a truck route around Murfreesboro to keep trucks out of town. At the request of the town we (DOT) removed it because of potential economic impacts from trucks not coming into town to buy fuel, etc. If trucks are not wanted in town this should first be brought before the town council.”
Murfreesboro Police Chief Darrell Rowe said it was tough on his officers to stop an 18-wheeler on Main Street simply due to not being able to discern who is going where and delivering what; or if they were in town to purchase fuel or grab a bite to eat.
Another topic discussed at the Council meeting was that of parking big rigs in the town’s residential areas. The problem is that they need to be able to park their trucks as residents of the town, however in some instances it is not only just an eyesore but a safety issue as well.
Town officials said they would consider asking the county to use the piece of property on Virginia Blvd. between the old Jamaican Restaurant and the lawyer’s office on the east side of town as a parking area for local truckers. They would be able to park their personal vehicle there and use it to travel home after parking their rig. Of course this would have to be somehow registered to town residents only.
Another discussion among the Council included allowing the food truck vendors that setup along West Main Street to have a centralized location, and to keep them from causing traffic and visibility issues throughout that part of town.