The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Zelzah?s speed limits face possible changes

CSUN students running late may no longer be speeding on Zelzah if the proposed plan, by the Los Angeles’ transportation committee to increase the speed limit on certain parts of the street is put into place.

The speed limit on Zelzah could be changed from 30 to 35 mph between Rinaldi Street and San Fernando Mission Boulevard and from 35 to 40 mph between Chatsworth and Nordhoff streets.’

The Los Angeles Department of Transportation recommended the changes after they studied Zelzah drivers and found that most of them were driving over the current 30 and 35 mph speed limit.

Under California law streets must be reviewed every seven years in order to allow police radar enforcement and ensure that streets don’t become speed traps for motorists. From there transportation officials round to the nearest 5 mph.

‘Changing the speed limit is not going to stop people from going over or under it,’ said Baisy Orellana, Junior sociology major. ‘But having (radar enforcement) is going to give them more control over it so thats a good thing.’

For Granada Hills Charter High School assistant principal, Joan Lewis, the increase in speed may pose a threat to her students because the proposed 35 mph speed limit would come right before her school. She recalled an incident in 2002 when student Jennifer Liu was in a coma for about a month after being hit by a car.

At the same time she acknowledged that the change in speed limit will allow for better and more accurate police enforcement.

‘The reason they are going to raise it is because police would be able to patrol the street,’ Lewis said. ‘We would ask that those who are making these decisions to do a careful review before coming to a decision.’

Los Angeles Department of Transportation spokesperson, Bruce Gillman, said that in order for police to use radar enforcement the speed limit on certain sections of Zelzah the speed limit would need to be increased either to 35 or 40 mph.

To him it makes more sense to increase the speed limit and have police radar enforcement rather than keep the same speed limit and have no radar enforcement.

When the proposed speed increase came up for decision on the council about three weeks ago, many members of the community voiced their concerns over the safety of students, pedestrians and bicyclist’s, Gillman said, causing the issue to be post-poned for further consideration.

‘The public got excited, that’s fine, but then the police can’t use radar enforcement which makes them insufficient,’ Gillman said.

He added that the speed limits would have no effect on the speed limits for crosswalks and schools, which are designated 200 feet before and after schools.

CSUN dorm tenant and sophomore art student, Sergio Zepeda, said his concern is that drivers won’t have enough time or care to slow down before arriving at a school zone and that increasing the speed limit further encourages speeding.

‘Although they study these streets the speed will continue to increase and in seven years’ it will go to 40,’ Zepeda said. ‘Once people see that the speed limit is 35 they’re going to drive at 40.’

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