Indianapolis City-County Councillor John Barth (District 7) doesn’t have to look at the data to know what’s going on with traffic across Marion County; he can just look at his email inbox. “Every single week my constituents send scores of emails expressing concerns related to traffic safety,” he said.
Irresponsible drivers took advantage of the decrease in traffic during the lockdown months, he says, racing, speeding, and generally ignoring traffic laws. Things have gotten particularly bad along the 38th Street and Michigan Road corridors, according to the Councillor and neighborhood groups in his district.
In response, Councillor Barth has led formation of a partnership with fellow Councillors, IMPD, and the city to launch a project to combat reckless driving with increased enforcement in traffic “hot spots” around the city along with public education campaign, including a soon-to-be announced public meeting where IMPD will roll out the strategy.
Support for this initiative comes from multiple neighborhood groups including Midtown, Inc., the Town of Rocky Ripple, the Meridian Street Foundation, and the neighborhood associations of Meridian-Kessler, Crown Hill, Butler-Tarkington, Golden Hill and Warfleigh.
In a letter supporting the initiative, leaders from the Crown Hill Neighborhood Association wrote, “Our community deserves to have the 38th Street corridor not be used as a racing strip.” Midtown Indy’s executive director Michael McKillip wrote in a letter to Councillor Barth, “In the past decade, no issue has generated more constituent complaints to us than the epidemic of reckless, high-speed driving on Midtown streets.”
IMPD Chief Randal Taylor praise Councillor Barth’s efforts and said, “I’m committed to allocating the resources needed for this important initiative.”