Dangerous situation on County Road 7

To the editor:

We live on the corner of Westwood Drive and Cumberland Road in Marshall. Our backyard is County Road 7. From our deck, we have seen many walkers, runners, skaters, joggers and bicyclists — many of them young children — potentially risking their safety to cross County Road 7 in order to access the bike/walking trails that are located on either side of County Road 7.

We have four children of our own and enjoy taking walks on these paths with them. However, we are always greatly concerned about our family’s welfare, as well as the well-being of the numerous other people, when crossing this road.

The speed limit on County Road 7 is 45 miles per hour; however, vehicles are notorious for speeding on this road. Beyond two small yellow signs indicating to drivers that bicyclists may be present, there is nothing else demonstrating to traffic that individuals are very likely to be crossing the road at any given time.

There are no flashing lights. There is no crosswalk. Moreover, the road’s conditions (in addition to the high speed of 45 miles per hour) further increase safety risks to pedestrians. There are no sidewalks. There are no bike lanes.

In short, beyond the two little yellow signs, there is virtually nothing in place to help prevent an accident from occurring at this crossing- despite this likely being one of the most frequently used bike crossings in Marshall!

Our concern is that a heartbreaking accident is going to happen at this crossing if something is not done very soon to address this unnecessary risk to the community.

Can the speed be slowed down to 30 miles per hour? Can a crosswalk be installed? Can flashing lights be added? Can sidewalks be built? Can bike/walking lanes be drawn?

We think there are likely many, low cost, measures that could be implemented to reduce the chance of an accident occurring in this area. At a minimum, we ask that this crossing be examined and appropriate mitigants be considered to reduce the likelihood of an accident happening — before it is too late.

Doug and Molly Simon

Marshall, MN