Changing speed limits coming to Fulshear

R. HANS MILLER - KATY TIMES SENIOR REPORTER
Posted 1/22/20

Drivers in Fulshear will need to pay attention to changing speed limit signs over the next few weeks as the city implements new speed limits on multiple roads in the city. Fulshear City Council …

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Changing speed limits coming to Fulshear

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Drivers in Fulshear will need to pay attention to changing speed limit signs over the next few weeks as the city implements new speed limits on multiple roads in the city. Fulshear City Council unanimously approved changes to speed limits suggested by city staff in light of a recently completed speed limit study.

“This study has been long-coming for the community because most of the roads that were built have what we call design speeds posted because they’re built to a specific speed,” said Fulshear Public Works Director Sharon Valiante. “So, we’ve taken the opportunity now that we have a lot of our collector streets in place and have had traffic on them for some time now to go ahead and do a speed study to post the appropriate speeds.

Speed limits on six roads will change by 5-10 mph with some of those roads having increases in the speed limit while others have reductions in speed limits, according to documents provided by the city. Roads with speed limit changes include Bois D’Arc Lane, Fulshear Trace, Cross Creek Bend Drive and  Flewellen Way.

“From the Executive Summary [of the study] there are… six sections of roadway that will have changes,” Valiante said.

Council members asked Valiante to have notices put up that the speed limits would be changing prior to switching the actual speed limit postings. Valiante said posting notices that changes to speed restrictions was already part of the implementation plan for instituting the ordinance updating the traffic regulations.

Council Person Joel Patterson asked Valiente why some roads were changing while others that seemed similar to him were not.

Roads were changed based on multiple factors that included average speed drivers were traveling on the roadways, what sorts of facilities or homes occupied spaces next to the roads and curves and other road features that could impact safety, Valiante said.

“The reason I’m asking for this [information] is because I want to understand why before I vote on this,” Patterson said.  “Because I think it’s very important to have consistency because [of] many of the issues that we’ve had before – and I certainly understand on major collector roads, you’re going 35 [mph] then all of a sudden you’re 30 [mph] and the Fulshear Police [Department] pulls you over.”

Fulshear Police Chief Kenny Seymour said pulling people over for revenue was not the point of the change and that speeding tickets are not a significant source of revenue for the city. Only a small amount of money from speeding tickets go to the city, he said. Most of the funds from traffic violations go to the state of Texas coffers, he said. He emphasized that the point of the speed updates was about safety.

“On the Bois D’Arc speed limit, the speed limit’s 45 [mph]. It’s a crazy road. It’s not forgiving. On the curves, you can’t do 45 [mph]. You can’t do 40 [mph],” Seymour said.

As the Cross Creek Ranch Subdivision grows, along with the city of Fulshear, Seymour said that consistency in establishing speed limits will improve public safety. Ensuring that drivers know what speed limits to expect and can anticipate dangers while driving are the key factors pushing the standardization which the speed limit study helped to define, he said.

 “We want to be consistent with it. We want the citizens to be comfortable with the speed limits so the conditions [are] safe and they know what to expect,” Seymour said.

Other items approved by the council included the first portion of designing a regional wastewater treatment plant and an update to the city’s master plan which guides development for the city. The update to the master plan is expected to take about ten months.

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