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Watertown resident complains about speeders on city’s Gotham Street hill

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Judith N. George has seen so many vehicles zooming by her house and down the Gotham Street hill that she had to try do something about it.

Drivers just ignore the speed limits of 30 mph entering the city and 15 mph down the hill, she said.

With more traffic in the neighborhood, Mrs. George, 1244 Gotham St., who has lived on the hill since 1971, told the Watertown City Council Monday night it is “just challenging” to pull out of her driveway or cross the street.

“But again, who cares?” she said. “Since all the residents have kids, grandkids and pets, plus the scores of deer that travel through the area, something needs to be done to slow down the speed demons.”

She suggested police patrols clocking vehicle speeds and installing an electronic speed detector would be helpful to slow down impatient drivers. It also would generate revenue for the city from speeding tickets, she said.

Over the years, the problem has gotten worse with more homes built in the neighborhood, the addition of the new hospice and an increase in traffic traveling through the area, she said.

“The traffic signs and lights are there,” she said, “but who cares?”

Council members said they understand her concerns. Mayor Jeffrey E. Graham suggested the Police Department look into the situation and City Manager Sharon A. Addison report to the council.

Calling it “an ongoing problem,” Councilwoman Roxanne M. Burns said a friend of hers who lives on Thompson Boulevard has seen cars end up in her front yard after going too fast.

“We’ll do what we can to resolve it,” she said, thanking Mrs. George for bringing the issue to the council’s attention.

Gotham Street isn’t the only place where motorists speed, council members said.

Councilwoman Teresa R. Macaluso said she would like to see another traffic light on Mill Street because of speeders heading out of the city.

Councilman Joseph M. Butler Jr. said he believes a stop sign on Holcomb Street, at Ten Eyck Street, would solve the problem in that neighborhood.

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