The Anthony Wayne Trail sometimes resembles a speedway more than a neighborhood thoroughfare, and the city is trying to slow motorists down.
Crews on Tuesday completed installing two cameras to detect speed violators -- the first such cameras in Toledo equipped solely for speed enforcement. Both were placed on the Anthony Wayne Trail covering each direction between South Avenue and Hippo Way, the entrance to the Toledo Zoo.
The cameras are the last of 11 approved for installation by Toledo City Council in June.
Toledo police spokesman Sgt. Joe Heffernan said the location was chosen based on a traffic study that showed the area is a prime spot for speeding and traffic accidents. He said the cameras should be operational within the next two weeks.
The speed limit is 50 mph.
The cameras' location is near the scene of a fatal head-on collision in October, 2008, involving a motorist who lost control and crossed the median, killing two children in an on-coming vehicle.
Councilman Rob Ludeman said Tuesday he approached Deputy Mayor Steve Herwat before council's regular meeting inquiring about the new cameras because he had not been aware that the city was now doing speed-only cameras.
"I don't know where that came from," he said.
Mr. Ludeman said he had favored red-light cameras because they would create safer intersections and perhaps, as a result, lower or at least contain Toledoans' auto insurance rates. But he "wasn't too keen" when the city started adding the speed-enforcement feature to the red-light cameras at many of the intersections.
Councilman D. Michael Collins, who, like Mr. Ludeman, lives in South Toledo, said he wasn't aware of the speed-only cameras. "I would have liked to see them between Glendale and Toledo Christian School," he added.
The speed-only cameras were listed in the city's latest agreement with Redflex Traffic Systems, which council approved in mid-June.
The first agreement between the city and Redflex Traffic Systems, in 2000, had a sliding scale beginning at 25 percent for the city and 75 percent for Redflex or 55 percent for the city and 45 percent for Redflex, depending on the number of violations paid. A 2008 agreement specified the shares for a $120 fine at 54.2 percent for the city and 45.8 percent for Redflex.
Under current terms, the city gets 75 percent and the Phoenix company gets 25 percent. The city now has 33 red light and speed cameras. Redflex is installing the 11 cameras this year in Toledo at its own cost.
The other new sites include northbound Secor Road at Alexis Road, eastbound and westbound Alexis at Whitmer Drive, northbound and southbound Reynolds Road at Bancroft Street, northbound and southbound Cherry Street at Delaware Avenue, and eastbound and westbound Dorr Street at Collingwood Boulevard.
Councilman George Sarantou, who recalled the speed-only cameras after being reminded, also said he would have preferred placing them closer to Glendale.
"I have had complaints over the years from people whose backyards back up to the Trail, and it's more after Glendale Avenue where you get a lot of speeders and motorcycles speeding, and that wakes up people's kids," Mr. Sarantou said.
Staff writer David Patch contributed to this report.
Contact Ignazio Messina at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-724-6171.