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Tampa neighbor hopes city will do more to slow 'terrible' speeding on Rome Avenue

While the speed limit is posted at 30 miles per hour, a recent survey found that most drivers exceed that
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Posted at 7:51 AM, Aug 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-12 08:08:31-04

TAMPA, Fla. — David Mahoney has lived along Rome Avenue in Tampa since the 60s.

“It’s just so quiet,” Mahoney said, from his large property near the corner of Rome and Hanna Avenues just west of the Hillsborough River. “No one ever bothers us back here.”

Lately, however, it’s not as quiet because of the constant traffic, which Mahoney said has quadrupled over the last decade.

“Oh my goodness,” he said. “It’s changed dramatically.”

Mahoney said the traffic is putting his neighborhood at risk, since many of the drivers who pass through are driving aggressively and well above the speed limit.

While the posted speed limit is 30 miles per hour, Mahoney said many far exceed that.

“Faster than the speed of light. It’s that bad. It’s terrible for a 30 mile an hour zone,” he said. “It’s just been terrible lately with the speeding on this road.”

The stretch of Rome Avenue runs between Hillsborough and Sligh Avenues and several other larger roads, and Mahoney thinks that’s part of the problem.

“It seems like we’re getting a lot of traffic from cut-offs from Armenia, Florida Avenue, and just people short-cutting between Sligh and Hillsborough to commute back and forth,” he said.

The City of Tampa studied a section of Rome Avenue just south of Mahoney’s home and found that most drivers are speeding there

“More than half the drivers were traveling around 40 miles per hour,” Brandie Miklus, with the city’s Mobility Department, wrote in an email to ABC Action News.

According to Miklus, the city has installed some “dynamic speed signs” in the area and has alerted Tampa Police Department about the problem “for additional monitoring.”

Additionally, the city is investigating if it should convert the intersection near Mahoney’s home — Rome and Hanna Avenues — into a four-way stop as a quick and cheap measure to slow some of the speeding.

“Our Community Engagement Team and Mobility Team will work together to notify the neighborhood of any traffic calming measures being implemented in the area,” wrote Miklus.

According to Miklus, the city’s Mobility Team will also “move to a neighborhood-wide focus on traffic calming in the near future.”

Any of those possible solutions would be welcomed by Mahoney. Until more are implemented, he said the speeding would continue to put him and others at risk.

“North of Sligh up to Waters, they’ve got speed bumps, and they’ve got two four-way stops. In between Sligh and Hillsborough, they have nothing,” he said. “So, I guess this is the Daytona strip here to get to Hillsborough Avenue or vice versa to Sligh.”