Edmonston officials said trucks are ruining their prized $1.3 million “Green Street,” and they’re proposing new restrictions to prevent further damage.
The environmentally friendly version of the roadway, Decatur Street, opened in November 2010 and is equipped with rain gardens — filtration systems preventing stormwater runoff from entering waterways — as well as low-energy street lamps, bike lanes and permeable pavement.
Edmonston Police Chief Stephen Walker said large trucks regularly use Decatur Street, causing the street to sink and deteriorate.
“Already, we’re starting to see quite a bit of stress on that roadway,” Walker said.
Edmonston Town Councilwoman Tracy Farrish (Ward 2) said areas on the street will require maintenance, though the town has not yet conducted a damage assessment.
In an Oct. 9 meeting, Edmonston’s council introduced traffic regulations that would prohibit vehicles weighing more than five tons, such as large commercial trucks, from traveling through the half-mile stretch of Decatur Street — from Kenilworth Avenue to the CSX railroad crossing — often referred to as “Green Street.”
“It’s got to stop,” said Town Administrator Guy Tiberio.
The new legislation would designate the mostly industrial 46th Avenue off Decatur Street as the access route for the trucks. To access 46th Avenue, vehicles would need to enter Edmonston through U.S. 1, rather than Kenilworth Avenue.
Johnny Bivar, assistant manager at Autopart International on 46th Avenue, said trucks already follow that route and he was not concerned about additional traffic.
“It is an industrial park. Trucks have to get in here somehow,” Bivar said.
The new restrictions will be voted on in November and would take effect in January if approved, Walker said. Before restrictions are enforced, letters would be mailed to the businesses whose trucks would be rerouted, and large signs would be posted on prohibited sections, he said.
“This is not a matter of us trying to complicate the situation. It’s just a matter of us preserving our streets,” said Edmonston Councilwoman Sophia Layne-Bee (Ward 1).