Not-so-Fast on Bayshore Drive Speed Reduction

The County of Door Highway and Facilities Committee was all prepared in October to elevate a recommendation to the Door County Board of Supervisors to lower the speed limit on Bay Shore Drive to a consistent 35 mph from north of Little Harbor in Sevastopol to Egg Harbor.

That changed, according to Thad Ash, county highway commissioner.

“Per state statutes, because the limit was reduced once already, to lower it further there is a state Department of Transportation [Wis-DOT] involvement with traffic study and consultation,” Ash said by email. “Typically, all roads by statute are designed for 55 mph, except Rustic Roads, which are 45 mph. Bay Shore Drive is not a Rustic Road, currently. The county has the ability to lower the speed by 10 mph or less from the design speed. In this case, that was 55 mph to 45.”

Ash said a state review and approval now needs to happen, “and there are some hurdles to get over. This discussion will happen at the next [Highway and Facilities] committee meeting.”

Ash said Wis-DOT requires an outside firm to do the needed studies and it could take a couple of months to complete. 

“It takes into account crash data, an anonymous speed study – one without signs telling you your speed – distance between drives, curves, hidden drives, road and shoulder width, etc.,” he said. “Then this firm makes a recommendation to the DOT, which in turn approves or denies at that point.”

The Highway and Facilities Committee will take up the issue at their next meeting, Ash said, on Wednesday, Nov. 9 at 9 am.