Middletown Road

Residents of Middletown Glen in Middletown are concerned about drivers traveling above the posted 25 mph speed limit in their neighborhood.

Tucked into a corner of town between the local middle and high schools and Md. 17, Middletown Glen is a neighborhood growing out of adolescence.

From a construction standpoint, the community is almost complete, with only three or four of 81 total units left to be built. The local streets, stained with orange and brown mud tracked in by construction vehicles, are still waiting for their final layer of asphalt to be put down.

The large, single-family houses arranged close together on small lots range from just over 1,500 square feet to about 3,300 square feet. Children’s chalk doodles cover the sidewalks in front of several homes, and kids on bikes and tricycles weave their way down the sidewalks and occasionally into the street.

But those narrow streets are causing growing pains, as some Middletown Glen residents are petitioning the town of Middletown to reduce the speed limit on the streets within the community.

Even though the speed limit is 25 mph, it seems faster on the neighborhood’s streets, which sometimes have cars parked on them that further limit visibility, said Sean Mahar, a neighborhood resident.

His street at the back of the neighborhood, Ingalls Drive, is a particularly bad spot for speeding drivers, Mahar said.

“They just burn right through here,” he said.

All of the young families in the area whose children ride their bikes and play outside their homes make driving even more dangerous, he said.

“There [are] 50-plus kids in this neighborhood already,” Mahar said.

Coming from northern Virginia, Mahar said he appreciates the controlled development in Middletown, and emphasized that the town has been great to his wife, Katrina, and him since they moved there in December 2017.

Katrina Mahar said in an email Wednesday that residents have tried talking to neighbors and putting out their own signs, but the problem has persisted.

“We have so many elementary-aged kids that are constantly crossing the streets to get to the green space and riding their bikes or playing ball during the warm weather [that] the parents are starting to get worried,” she said.

The speeders are mostly residents or their guests from the newer parts of the neighborhood who might not know how many children are playing in the neighborhood, she said.

Since the Middletown Glen neighborhood is new, the town will have to look into the speeding issue, Town Administrator Drew Bowen said.

The issue is on the agenda for a town workshop Thursday.

Bowen expects the commissioners will ask him to talk to the sheriff’s deputies who cover the town about what types of speeds they see in the area, and to collect other information.

Bowen said the town will probably put out a sign that monitors speeds and the number of vehicles, in order to collect some data for the neighborhood.

When they do that, many times they find that drivers are actually driving below the posted limit, even though residents’ perceptions may be different.

Most roads in Middletown are posted at 25 mph, with none that are 15 mph, Bowen said. But that doesn’t mean the town couldn’t lower the speed limit if it wants to.

Katrina Mahar said that if the town doesn’t want to reduce the speed limit, the residents will ask for speed bumps or flashing signs to be put in to get the attention of drivers.

“I’m also all for [deputies] coming out, which is what the town said they would do while they are analyzing the speed limit in the neighborhood,” she said.

Follow Ryan Marshall on Twitter: @RMarshallFNP.

Ryan Marshall is the transportation and growth and development reporter for the News-Post. He can be reached at rmarshall@newspost.com.

(19) comments

pappyjoe

Simple solution!! tire Spikes as Law Enforcement uses.Group up as a neighborhood and get serious. Google/text if that`s your thing but walkie talkies is my preference I`m, old school. 5 mile range and I don`t think Google/text will help you intervening, 1 informs you: ones coming your direction way....way to fast. You need to keep records in finding best time for your neighborhood watch FRIENDS too....roll out the spikes. Practice makes perfect[beam]

EABiker

The speed limit is 25 on most streets in any town, and there are always people driving faster than that. Why would these people think their neighborhood is any different?

public-redux

4 or 5 well-placed ticket-issuing speed cameras would do the trick.

richardlyons

Only in Frederick City and close to schools (don't recall the distance). Speed bumps work but they impact everyone, not just the speeders.

public-redux

Boxes that look like speed cameras and that flash a bright light also might work.

gabrielshorn2013

They could also try what they did in Foxfield in Middletown about a year or so ago. They put up a sign that measured your speed as you approached. Unfortunately, some folks figured out that it wasn't "official" which could lead to a citation, so they started trying for a "high score". They took it down soon after.

public-redux

Phasers, possibly not set to stun.

DickD

The speed bumps around TJ are really bad to drive over. If you don't slow to 5 mph, you are in trouble and that is a little bit ridiculous.

DickD

Usually the cameras are set to go off at 5 mph over the speed limit. So, at 25 that would be 30, at 15 it would be 20. I don't believe there is more than one way to get in or out of Middletown Glen. Deputies don't need to chase, just sit at the entrance. Most likely it is their own kids speeding.

DickD

Lowering the speed limit is okay. What is not okay is putting up a cross walk in the middle of the street and then residents parking their cars so that cars going down the street are forced to go over into the opposite lane. It is happening on Broad Street and the residents parking there should be given a ticket for blocking the street.

newspostreader

So the speed limit is 25, but people ignore it. So the solution is to lower the speed limit so people follow it? I'm not sure that is how it works.

mohawkfarm

I guess Middletown residents will be doing the "citizens arrest" next. If you cant monitor a rule already in existence then whats the deal with making a new one????

gabrielshorn2013

Folks disregard the 25 mph posted speed limit and barrel through the neighborhood, so they want to reduce the limit to 15 mph. Yeah, sure, that'll work.

Samanthapowers

sigh. poor middletown folk. why not increase it?

DickD

Middletown Glen is a new subdivision and very few go in there, except for the people that live there. So, it is most likely neighbors against neighbors.

DickD

But if the deputies do their job, tickets will be handed out. And they should give tickets on Broad Street for blocking the street.

gabrielshorn2013

My point exactly Dick. Lowering the speed limit when folks aren't following the higher limit will do nothing. Enforcing the limit with placement of deputies or speed cameras will. That is until the deputies move on or the cameras removed. We have the same issue where I live. Folks fly down the mountain doing 50+ mph in a 25 mph zone, hitting the dip and going airborne. I have replaced my mailbox twice after it being run over because a car lost control.

rbtdt5

Feel like I've heard a similar argument for something else before.

gabrielshorn2013

Yep, allegory or satire [wink]

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