North Miami / NMB

North Miami

North Miami may reduce speed limits in neighborhoods

The North Miami City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to direct the city staff to study the possibility of reducing speed limits in residential areas.

Although the study received unanimous approval, it was approved only after Vice Mayor Philippe Bien-Aime suggested paying for it with money reserved to fix streets and sidewalks in his district.

The council allocated $1.5 million in late 2013 to fix up District 3. But speeding is an important safety issue throughout the city, Bien-Aime said.

“It’s a big issue for me,” he said.

Councilman Scott Galvin liked the idea of the study until he learned during the meeting how much it could cost.

"I was in favor of this but staff again did not provide us with enough information," Galvin said.

Interim City Manager Aleem Ghany estimated the study would cost $50,000 to $75,000.

The resolution, co-sponsored by Bien-Aime and Councilwoman Carol Keys, authorizes the city staff to study the effects of reducing speed limits in residential areas to 25 mph from 30 mph.

Both Keys and Bien-Aime said they have received complaints from residents about speeding, not only in their own districts but citywide.

"People are speeding like crazy in our city," Keys said during the meeting. "People are using our city as a raceway."

Mayor Lucie Tondreau said she didn't think it would be a good idea to reduce speed limits in a city the size of North Miami.

"We're not a village," Tondreau said. "We're a city of 75,000."

The mayor suggested speed bumps as an alternative, but Keys said those would not be good, either.

"We can’t have speed bumps on every street because of the fire department," Keys said.

Bien-Aime emphasized that what was before the council was only a study.

"This is not a resolution to decrease speed limits now," Bien-Aime said.

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