A premonition made in November 2017 by a city alderman may come true, at least in part.
“It seems to me like we are going to end up putting them at every single intersection,” said Alderman Steve Harvey, when McMinnville’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen considered a three-way stop at the intersection of Westwood Drive and Rivermont Drive almost two years ago. “Fourth Avenue is going to be next. I guarantee you, if you put one at Rivermont, the next street over where Fourth Avenue comes into Westwood Drive they are going to want one. We are going to be stopping at every single street.”
The 2017 request was approved and now Harvey’s words are becoming prophetic.
Members of the city’s Safety Committee are currently considering a written petition signed by several families in the area to place a stop sign on Westwood Fourth Avenue where it intersects with Boyd Avenue. At this time, only motorists on Boyd must stop.
“If you think we need it,” said Alderman Everett Brock, when chair Ryle Chastain asked for committee thoughts. “We keep going crazy with stop signs.”
Harvey was in attendance and again, expressed his belief that every intersection in Westwood will be a three-way or four-way stop.
“We are going to end up putting one at every intersection in Westwood,” said Harvey. “I’m not on this committee.”
In 2012, officials approved a four-way stop at the intersection of Rivermont Drive and Boyd Avenue. Before that change was made, traffic from Boyd Avenue traffic was required to stop. Motorists on Rivermont were not.
“I certainly feel the same way,” Brock said to Harvey. “Maybe we need one there but didn’t need them in other places. We just keep putting them everywhere in Westwood.”
McMinnville Police Chief Bryan Denton, as he did in 2017, stated that he pulled records on past incidents and those do not support the request from a safety standpoint.
“We haven’t had an incident in that immediate area in a while,” said Denton. “There were some children a couple years ago that were hit. If I remember correctly, it was not driver error on that. Those streets do tend to be crossover streets. Folks do tend to be a little faster than they should at times. As far as complaints, we haven’t receive any. I would not be opposed to this. I don’t think statistics would back it up, but it is a residential area and there are a lot of walkers.”
Committee members approved the request. Their recommendation will be sent to the full Board of Mayor and Aldermen for consideration.