Letters to the Editor

Island Crest Way crosswalk

I have just finished reading an article in the Mercer Island Quarterly regarding residential roadway resurfacing projects. My concern is the crosswalk at Island Crest Way and 42nd Street. I have lived on Mercer Island for 22 years, in three different homes. I understand the traffic here. Now that we live close to MIHS, our kids can walk to school if they can survive getting across ICW. My two boys are now in college, thankfully, although they have both seen cars get rear-ended at that crosswalk. Our youngest is afraid of that crosswalk, so I have been driving her from 83rd Avenue S.E. up 42nd Street onto ICW, then I have to turn left immediately onto 42nd on the other side, and it is dangerous in a car — cars are racing up behind me heading south in the morning. Then I drop her off at the bottom of the path, a waste of gas and time if not for the safety issue, and it’s scary for me getting back home, too.

When I lived on the South end, and I also used to have to turn left from Merrimount onto ICW. I know what goes on, driving ICW. If you head south from 40th, cars speed up before the crosswalk to jockey for position in the one-lane road ahead. If cars are heading north, they speed up when the road widens to two lanes before the crosswalk because they want to make the light ahead and are racing to and from work. Cops don’t pull people over in that stretch of the road — it would totally block traffic.

The speed limit should be lower; Bellevue Way has a lower speed limit closer to BHS. The road diet should have been done. I know of grade school, middle school and special ed kids who use this crosswalk. Does someone have to be killed before this crosswalk is made safe?

Do I have to become a flag lady at that crosswalk? It’s not desirable, but this has occurred to me.

Joanie Woodland

Community Events, April 2014

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