Sign updates to include new stops

COLUMBIA CITY — Columbia City’s program to update street signs will involve more than just posting speed limits.Columbia City Street Department Superintendent Kelly Cearbaugh has been briefing the city’s Board of Works and Common Council in recent weeks about updating signs throughout the city.Cearbaugh told the board last month the new signs are part of a project to bring the city up to federal compliance.He said numerous streets aren’t posted with speed limits, adding that if they aren’t, they default to 30 miles per hour by state statute.At last Tuesday’s Common Council meeting, Cearbaugh presented a list of streets that would have 20 mile per hour signs posted, as well as intersections that would be posted as one-way stops and intersections that would be posted as two-way stops. Those intersections, according to Cearbaugh’s lists, are currently marked with yield signs.Cearbaugh said the federal regulations pertain also to the “reflectivity” of the signs, adding that Columbia City was divided into 10 sections, two of which were brought up to compliance last year.Cearbaugh said the law requires that speed limit signs, stop signs and warning signs be changed by 2015 and that the final step, the changing of street name signs to meet reflectivity guidelines be done by 2018.Cearbaugh said the 10 sections are being done two sections per year, which is how he’s able to project being done by 2015, three years ahead of schedule.Cearbaugh reported to the board that he met with Columbia City Chief of Police Mike Petersen to reduce sign redundancy.“We’re seeing where we can consolidate signs too, so we’re not Sign City,” said Cearbaugh.