Letter to the editor: Is there a better solution for slowing school zone traffic?


I understand that traffic needs to be changed in school zones. The 220th roadway near Westgate Elementary is a major entrance for Highway 99 and the off-ramp traffic for the 220th freeway exit into Edmonds. But are Police ticket dispensers the best answer or a temporary fix?

I am not a city planner, but instead of a Band Aid, couldn’t the city make change that would actually save lives? Should the focus be on sidewalks in school neighborhoods where children walk and more four-way stops on residential streets in school zones? Could traffic signals  — actually stopping moving vehicles in front of the school — be the real answer?

A police camera ticket dispenser could help slow vehicles down, while real plans are made for the safety of children, but I don’t see police traffic cameras as a permanent solution.

What do you think?

Denise Cooper

  1. I think stop signals are better than flashing crossing signals and definitely good sidewalks. I am not a fan of the reduced speed especially if it is photo enforced because it adds another distraction to the environment. People just need to pay better attention when pedestrians or bicyclists are around. No matter how much we spend or do accidents are still going to happen. Maybe harsher penalties like a 1000 dollar fine or losing your licence would get people’s attention.

  2. Good thoughts. A money making bandaid versus a more permanent solution may be good in the short nearsighted term but more appropriate traffic controls would be a much better solution.

  3. I understand your perspective. Not a fan of traffic cameras except in school zones. As long as Edmonds puts clear signage warnings of camera enforced school zones, I believe it’s a solution. Great example is Brookside Elementary in Lake Forest park. People adhere strictly to 20 mph. Bad example is Broadview Elementary on Greenwood (which I’m sure catches many violators every day) because the warning signage is so poor. I think most people will adhere if they see clear signage that they are approaching a school zone.

  4. I agree with Jim regarding stop signals being much more effective, than blinking traffic crosswalks.
    In 2021 the Dayton Street Neighborhood petitioned (signed petition with over 75 signatures) the city to please help stop and slow down traffic approaching the Frances Anderson Center, where 100’s of children are present daily for sports activites and Main Street Daycare. In the end, the city installed blinking crosswalks and a speed reduction sign, which was a nice gesture, unfortunaley, these have not deterred speeding.
    Did you know….Dayton Street is the only Edmonds Bowl street without any stop signs(for 3 blocks) between 6th Ave. S. up to 9th Ave? All other streets: Main(Stop sign at 7th and Main) Maple, Alder, Walnut and Pine have stop signs for safety. Yet, Dayton Street, which has more critical risk and endangerment to children than any other East to West running Street in Edmonds, goes without.
    Please encourage the City of Edmonds to acknowledge, include and correct the dangers on Dayton Street(between 6th Ave. S. and 9th Ave. in front of the Childrens center) with the same critical importance as School Zones to protect our precious children.

  5. Why not just the old fashioned volunteer on the street with a flag and a vest?

    … oh yeah… everything in today’s world is about – how to take more money!

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