Tribal Government & News

Speed limit reduced on southern end of Grand Ronde Road

10.20.2015 Dean Rhodes Public Safety

The speed limit on the southern part of Grand Ronde Road between Highway 18 and the first bridge has been reduced to 20 mph because the area meets the criteria for a business district, said Polk County Public Works Director Todd Whitaker.

The speed limit was officially decreased from 40 mph by the Polk County Board of Commissioners during the Oct. 8 meeting.

Whitaker said that once an area meets the state statute definition for a business area, the speed limit automatically becomes that which is mentioned in state law.

Whitaker said the county examined the area after a request from the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde seeking to reduce the speed limit on the road for improved pedestrian safety following the tragic death of a Tribal youth who was struck on Sept. 7 while crossing the road on her bicycle.

Whitaker said the county also is working with the Tribe’s Public Works Department to install additional signage near Tyee Road and also has requested that the Oregon Department of Transportation conduct a speed study with the goal of reducing the speed limit on the entire length of Grand Ronde Road between highways 18 and 22.

Grand Ronde Tribal Police Sgt. Jake McKnight said officers will be patrolling that section of Grand Ronde Road and giving reminders to drivers that they need to slow down and obey the speed limit.