HAVERHILL — As downtown residents ask police to stop motorcycles from roaring through the area, 16th Avenue neighbors said they are facing another kind of traffic problem.
City Councilor Melinda Barrett said a resident contacted her with concerns about commercial vehicles and city trucks using 16th Avenue as a shortcut between Main Street and Primrose Street.
She said that in general, there’s been a traffic increase, along with more speeding in that area.
“He says it’s a residential street that is otherwise being abused by commercial, town and civilian vehicles,” Barrett said of a 16th Avenue resident who brought the complants to the city.
“He says it’s become a massive cut-through, and there’s speeding as well,’’ Barrett said. “You can’t stop people from using the road, but you can enforce the speed limit.”
To fight the downtown problem, starting last weekend police planned to begin noise patrols of the area after complaints about loud motorcycles and vehicles revving up their engines after bars close on Friday and Saturday nights. Officers assigned to patrol the downtown on Thursday through Saturday nights will be using sound level meters to help determine if anyone is in violation of city noise ordinances.
To examine the 16th Avenue concerns, Barrett plans to bring up the traffic issue at tonight’s City Council meeting.
“I’d like to have this sent to traffic and safety to study,” she said of a committee that reviews such issues. “Maybe they can do a car count or have a police officer observe what’s going on to see if it’s something the city should address.”
16th Avenue connects Main Street in the Walnut Square neighborhood with Primrose Street, close to the city’s Highway Department. Some landscapers pay the city so they can dispose of lawn clippings and brush at the Highway Department brush dump.