To the editor:
At the Nov. 4 Eagan City Council meeting, neighborhood residents amplified valid concerns for pedestrian safety, focusing on Diffley Road and beyond. It continues to be unfathomable that the city of Eagan along with Dakota County find it so utterly difficult to do their jobs.
At least 15 years of these complaints, yet our elected officials and their staff still claim they need another study. With three schools in one city block adjacent to a high-speed, high-volume highway, they seem to find it too complicated to take the time and define this area as a bona fide school zone. Why?
School-age children and parents who live near these same schools stood before the City Council and expressed observing on a daily basis numerous illegal traffic infractions displayed by drivers of all ages such as speeding, running red lights, reckless driving, and turning into crosswalks so close to pedestrians that they could reach out and touch the vehicle if they wanted.
We were appalled that even though a precious child, a friend to many of these same children speaking, had lost his life, there was no police presence on Diffley Road during the morning school rush hour to show concern for student safety following the Nov. 1 accident. On Nov. 5, the Eagan Police Department placed a speed monitor at the corner of Diffley/Daniel. Is that machine capable of issuing tickets?
We are not asking anymore, we are demanding immediate placement of a controlled crosswalk at Diffley Road and Daniel Drive where vehicle traffic has to stop whenever a pedestrian activates the system; in addition, permanently reduce the Diffley speed limit to 30 mph 24/7 from Lexington to Dodd. In due time, a permanent controlled traffic light at Diffley/Daniel for both pedestrians and drivers needs to be erected.
In comparison to the Cliff Road project’s public engagement, all residents need to be designated stakeholders and formally alerted to city and county meetings affecting their neighborhood’s pedestrian/vehicle traffic and allowed to discuss/vote on any plans before they are implemented.
For the sake of another life, we are not asking for much.