MAPLEWOOD, NJ – The Township Committee passed a number of ordinances which had been discussed at its prior meeting, including the reduction of the speed limit on Valley Road from 35 mph to 25 mph. This decision is technically a formal request, which will be made to Essex County officials who have jurisdiction over the county road.

Mayor Victor DeLuca indicated that Essex County engineers have communicated willingness to consider and most likely pass the requested change.  South Orange officials are considering doing the same, which would keep the speed limit consistent for most of its length.

The only committee member to vote against the ordinance was Gerry Ryan, who suggested doing more research into traffic patterns and any unexpected consequences of a speed limit change.  Resident and Planning Board chair Tom Carlson stood before the committee and asked that the decision be delayed so that the impact of the change could be studied. 

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“We already have a 25 mile per hour limit in the school zone when children are present as you get near the high school,” said DeLuca. “It is also a residential area. I think we should move forward.”

Committeeman Marlon Brownlee said there was no reason that unintended consequences could not be monitored after the change is made.

No change will be seen on Valley Street until Essex County officials also pass an ordinance and change the signage to alert drivers. Maplewood Police will be in charge of enforcing the limit, as they are now.