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~J~:q~J 37~" vote expected for 52nd street design plans <br />By A. EVONTf ANDERSON <br />lndepend.'3nt Newspapers <br />· If first impressions are any <br />indicator of which way Town of <br />Paradise Valley council mem- <br />bers may vote, 52nd Street resi- <br />dents may soon get the help <br />they have been asking for to <br />alleviate traffic. <br />The council is expected to <br />vote Jan. 22 whether or not to <br />approve a traffic calming design <br />plan that was unveiled last <br />month at a Town CounciJ work <br />session. <br />Vice Mayor Sylvia Yoder said <br />she was pleased with the new <br />seen," she said. <br />If the plan receives the coun- <br />. cil's stamp of approval, builders <br />will install a total of seven traf- <br />fic controllers, inCluding a medi- <br />an island that will be built near. <br />the street's northwest entrance- <br />way by Shea Boulevard. Other <br />traffic calming improvements <br />would run along 52nd Street <br />from Shea to Berneil ·Drive. <br />Dr. Alan Leibowitz, a resident <br />of 52nd Street who had months <br />before worked with the Town <br />staff on another design plan, <br />said he was not ecstatic about <br />the new design, but is hoping <br />the council finally votes Y,es. <br />there," he said. <br />Mr. Leibowitz' apprehension <br />comes on the heels of several <br />Town Council voting delhys and <br />a plan that was junked last <br />October. Residents of 52nd <br />Street have asked for the coun- <br />cil's help in rectifying the prob- <br />lem of cut-through, high-speed <br />traffic on the street for the past <br />three years. <br />However, like in the past· <br />when price was the biggest <br />stumbling block for getting a <br />council nod, cost may again be <br />the deciding factor. <br />designs. · <br />"The designs we have seen <br />thus far are an improvement <br />and the best designs I have <br />"If this (plan) is the bkst that <br />everyone could live with; this is <br />.fine. But I'll get excited~when I <br />actually see a bulldozer out <br />According to Caryn Logan <br />Heaps, who is an architect <br />working with the Town in <br />putting together the new plans, <br />Photo by A. EVONTi ANDERSON/Independent Newspapers <br />See El.1 STREET page 10 <br />New design plans proposed for 52nd Street would call for a traffic circle <br />(like the one above at Berneil Drive and 52nd Street) and several traffic <br />chokers. The plans were presented at a Dec. 18 council work session. <br />Ill STREET continued from page 1 <br />her company has estimated the <br />pr.ojecL will cost at least <br />$75,000. The council had set <br />aside less than that for the <br />Town's share of the project. At <br />the time the Independent went <br />to press, no word was given if <br />the Town's projected amount <br />would be raised. The council <br />could vote to increase the limit, <br />but Ms. Yoder said the $50,000 <br />that was previous suggested was <br />a figure she is hoping the street <br />could still be completed for. <br />"With participation from the <br />residents and possible participa- <br />tion with Phoenix, we may be <br />able to get into that range," she <br />said. <br />diction and Town staff has been <br />in negotiations with the city <br />staff in hopes of having them <br />pitch in some funding. Town <br />Manager Tom Martinsen said <br />Phoenix officials have yet to <br />agree on a specific dollar <br />amount and "it will probably be <br />very little if they do." <br />The eastern half of 52nd <br />Street falls under Phoenix juris- <br />The designs have been given <br />to Phoenix and a contribut1ng <br />amount is expected from city <br />Ttlj[ <br />Arrests show Dill problem is still Ihnnge <br />1,066 cited in E. Valley holiday patrols <br />By Jim Walsh and <br />Di'Oina Balazs <br />The Arizona Republic <br />The East Valley DUI Task Force has <br />made the same number of arrests for <br />two consecutive years, demonstrating the <br />continuing problem posed by drivers <br />under the influence. <br />'"It's very chronic," said Mesa police <br />Sgt. Brian Kozak, who headed last year's <br />task force. <br />Police believe one in every eight <br />drivers is impaired, Kozak said. The <br />numbers backed that up, with more than <br />I ,000 arrests made as the result of 7,964 <br />traffic stops. The task force made' j ,066 <br />arrests in 1997, the same as in 1996-. <br />The task force uses saturation pair~Is <br />• <br />during the holidays in East Valley <br />municipalities, including Scottsdale, <br />Tempe, Mesa, Chandler and Gilbert. <br />"I think we're making a slight <br />improvement," Kozak said. "I do stop <br />people who really do have designated <br />drivers and everyone else in the car is <br />drunk." <br />Scottsdale police officers participating <br />in the task force were responsible for I 0 <br />percent of the arrests, I 06, said Sgt. <br />Dave Larson of the Scottsdale Police <br />Department's Ira tlic enforcement unit. <br />··We know as officers we saved a <br />tragedy from happening in somebody 's <br />family, whether it be a fatality or a <br />se1ious injury," he said. <br />During the hoi idays, Scottsdale did <br />101 record any serious alcohol-related <br />1ceidents, Larson said. <br />He said Scottsdale's parti~ipation in <br />he task force had a twofold effect. The <br />Please see DUI, Page .f <br />officials sometime this week, <br />Mr. Martinsen said. <br />Residents may also be asked <br />to ante up some private fund- <br />ing. If they do, the money could <br />go toward maintaining the traf- <br />fic calming structures once they <br />are completed as well as land- <br />scaping. However, 52nd Street <br />residents may also be asked to <br />pay for part of the.overall build- <br />ing cost. <br />+ <br />ill arrests <br />aatch total <br />from 1996 <br />DUI, .fivm Page I <br />officers who patrolled took <br />impaired drivers ofl the road, <br />benefiting motorists who "expect <br />to get from point A to point B <br />without 1:-~tting into a collision <br />with a drunk." <br />In addition, the task force <br />increased the number of officers <br />working the streets during the <br />holiday season. Of the 14 <br />evenings the task force patrolled, <br />six evenings included portions of <br />Scottsdale, Larson said. <br />Close to 30 Scottsdale officers <br />participated in the task force, <br />with an average of eight out on <br />any given night. <br />The Paradise Valley Police <br />Department. and the ·Maricopa <br />County Sheriff's Office, wl1ich <br />patrols the towns of Cave Creek, <br />Carefree and Fountain Hills, also <br />participated in the task force as <br />well as conducting their own <br />DlJI patrols. The Sherill's Office <br />assigned 12 deputies to the task <br />force. <br />A I though Kozak is encouraged <br />when he makes a stop and fi9ds <br />a designated driver behind ·'fhe <br />wheel. he hopes those m:rested <br />for their first offense get the <br />message that drinking and <br />driving don't mix. He said he <br />takes satisfaction that each <br />person arrested reduces tile threat <br />to innocent motorists. <br />Kozak admits it's clear that <br />the drunks are out on the <br />highways on a regular basis and <br />that police can probabh make a <br />similar number of arrests when- <br />ever they focus on the D lJ I <br />problem through a large commit- <br />ment of officers. <br />Kozak said the averal(e drunk- <br />en driver arrested by -the task <br />force was male, 27 years old, <br />with a blood alcohol reading of <br />0.14 percent. Arizona drivers are <br />presumed under the influence at <br />0.10 percent. <br />It's no coincidence that most <br />drunken drivers are 21 to 35 <br />years old, Kozak said, while <br />traffic accidents are the leading <br />cause of death for people 5 to <br />35. One drunk driver, however, <br />was only 14 years old. <br />Although the majority of those <br />arrested are first offenders. <br />Kozak said, 147 of the arrests <br />were for felony DU I. This means <br />the drivers either had committed <br />their third offense or were <br />driving with a suspended license. <br />The East Valley task force <br />plans another DU I crackdown for <br />March 17 --St. Patrick's Day. <br />Scottsdale pol ice wi II conduct <br />a sobriety checkpoint the week- <br />end before St. Patrick's Day, <br />Larson said. In addition. the <br />Sheriff's Office also is planning <br />a sobriety checkpoint in Scotts- <br />dale. <br />Statewide, a holiday DU I task <br />force consisting ef 65 agencies <br />arrested 2,663 drunken drivers, <br />compared with 2, 131 in 1996, an • <br />increase of 532. In 1995, the <br />task force made I ,499 DUI <br />arrests.