Drivers in a neighborhood on the north side of Frederick may have more reason to watch their speed, as the city considers adding a speed camera near a private school in the area.
The city’s aldermen will consider a plan at their meeting Thursday night to designate a section of Christophers Crossing as a school zone for St. John’s Regional Catholic School, located along Opossumtown Pike, to allow the installation of speed cameras in the area.
The area must be designated as a school zone in order for the cameras to be placed.
The Frederick Police Department has received numerous complaints of speeding along various parts of Christophers Crossing within a half-mile radius of St. John’s, Lt. Sean Carr of the Frederick Police Department told the aldermen at a workshop Wednesday.
The area between Moran Drive and Crestone Drive received the most complaints, Carr said. Even though the segment is within the half-mile radius of the school, it is not currently considered part of the school zone.
Because of the complaints, the department increased enforcement in the area, and conducted a three-day speed study in March.
The city has used cameras to monitor vehicles’ speed in school zones since 2011.
The cameras were activated by vehicles traveling at 42 mph, or 12 mph over the posted speed limit, according to a memo prepared by Carr ahead of Wednesday’s workshop.
Cameras monitored both the eastbound and westbound lanes of the road.
In the eastbound lanes, the cameras captured 287 vehicles that would have been in violation, including 30 during what would be the times students were coming to school in the morning, and 45 when they would be leaving in the afternoon. The top speed recorded for those lanes was 65 mph.
In the westbound lanes, 775 vehicles would have committed speeding violations, including 35 violations in the morning, and 166 in the afternoon. The top speed recorded was 76 mph.
The information from the study persuaded Police Chief Jason Lando and Director of Public Works Zack Kershner to recommend revising the description of the St. John’s school zone to include the new section of road.
The city would be required to post notices about the cameras for 30 days before any citations would be issued.
Alderman Kelly Russell asked if the cameras could be in place by the time school starts in mid-August.
That probably wouldn’t be possible, but they could probably come soon afterward, Carr said.
Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak asked if there was a way to move the process along faster. Without any opposition from the four aldermen present, the issue was added to the agenda for Thursday’s meeting.