Still passing through

Residents of a local neighborhood say semi trucks continue to drive through and get stuck their streets. A digital sign had been in place on Moulton Street, warning trucks against driving along Moulton Street

Residents of one local residential neighborhood say they are still dealing with 18-wheelers driving along their streets, despite efforts by city officials to prevent it from happening.

Monica Scoggins told the Herald-Banner Monday that there has been no let up in the number of the trucks passing through.

“No, they try to cut down our street on Walworth and take out our light poles,” Scroggins said.

Orion Casper spoke out to the Greenville City Council after a semi truck was stuck in a ditch near his home at the corner of Park and Seventh streets in March and had to be towed out.

“Since then we have had one more that went into a ditch and then we have had one going the other direction,” Casper said.

At the March 26 city council meeting, City Manager Summer Spurlock discussed measures being taken by city staff to improve the situation on Park Street, including meeting with engineer Martin Gonzalez with TxDOT, Greenville Police Chief Scott Smith and Park Street resident Dennis Mathis. The decision was made to increase signage and enforcement to keep 18 wheeler traffic off of Moulton Street – which is a section of Business Highway 69 – as drivers exit off Interstate 30.

A blinking sign reading “No Thru Trucks,” was situated south of the Valero gas station where I-30 crosses Moulton.

Christal Chitwood, the station’s assistant manager, said the sign was recently removed from the spot, but that it didn’t create any problems for the store.

“We haven’t noticed any change in our business,” Chitwood said. “It was just for the people living at the other end of Moulton.”

Also at the March 26 city council work session, Mayor David Dreiling recommended moving the blinking sign to the north side of the Valero so that truck drivers exiting the gas station parking lot could also see the sign and be reminded not to turn right onto Moulton.

Casper believes the issue, in addition to a lack of signage, is the lack of attention truck drivers’ give to what’s there.

“They all state their GPS is leading them in this direction in heading back to Interstate 30,” Casper said.

Tim Kruse said he hasn’t noticed any significant change.

“It does not seam like the truck traffic has decreased very much,” Kruse said. “It was a nice gesture by the city to install the two pylons at the corner of Park and Moulton but just as I expected, one was taken out by a semi and it has yet to be replaced and there is now metal sticking out of the ground where it once was. Is the truck that took out the pylon covering the repair/replacement?”

Benjamin Collins sees “two basic problems” that cause truck drivers to continue driving through the area.

“I think there are two basic problems: GPS routes, and the fact that all the signage isn’t visible until after the trucks have already turned,” said Benjamin Collins. “Not sure what we can do about GPS, but additional signage out on the frontage road before the turn for Moulton street might help.”

Casper does credit the efforts of local law enforcement at addressing the problem.

“The Greenville Police Department is great about coming down,” he said. “They are trying to enforce it the best they can.”

At tonight’s city council meeting, Greenville City Attorney Daniel Ray will report on what the maximum allowable fine will be for semi trucks on Moutlon or Park Street.