State says no to Camillus neighbors who want slower speed limit

Route 5 in Camillus

Next to the Camillus bypass, the Township 5 development is undergoing construction.

It will soon feature a Costco department store along with restaurants, entertainment venues and 96 apartment units.

The bypass comes to an end a little more than two miles away. This is where you enter Route 5, where the speed limit is 55 miles per hour. Because of the Township 5 development, many Camillus residents, including Barb Jones, say 55 MPH is too fast for this fast growing area.

"With the increased population and children, we have a middle school across the highway. It's just becoming increasingly dangerous." Jones told CNY Central's Jim Kenyon.

Jones and Camillus town leaders want the State Department of Transportation to reduce the speed limit on Route 5 for two miles--from the Camillus bypass, west to Bennettâ??s corners.

The town wants it to be 45 MPH, but the State DOT turned down their request. In a letter to the Town Supervisor, the state said, "Radar checks show the most appropriate speed limit is 55 mph. The accident history does not show any accident pattern related to excessive speed." State DOT spokesperson Gene Cilento says drivers would probably ignore a reduced speed. "If you just go out and put up a sign that says 40 or 45 MPH, people who drive that route are going to drive at the speed they're comfortable with." Cilento said.

Cilento says 16,178 vehicles travel that stretch of Route 5 on average each day. The letter to the town says the state it will improve the signage to remind drivers of upcoming intersections, and in the future, Cilento says engineers may re-examine the 55 mile speed limit if people continue to complain.