By Bob Balgemann


BELVIDERE – After being absent for a number of years, it appeared that rumble strips will return to Squad Prairie Road, west of Poplar Grove Road.

However, that won’t happen anytime soon.

The question of safety at that intersection in unincorporated Boone County went before the county board at its May 18 meeting. While most of the suggested improvements were approved, the rumble strips didn’t make it.

A resident who lives about 600 feet from the intersection asked that the strips not be put back in, because of the noise that’s created when vehicles approach Poplar Grove Road.

She said she believed flashing yellow lights on top of the existing stop signs should be the first step and rumble strips should be a last resort.

An amendment to the motion for approval was accepted in a voice vote.

Other related actions affecting the intersection had been recommended for approval by the roads and capital improvements committee, at its May meeting.

They were approved unanimously by the full board and include: county staff sending a letter to Belvidere Township Road Commissioner Rich Lee with the aforementioned flashing yellow caution lights request; a letter will be sent to Bonus Township Road Commissioner Donald Gustafson, asking that flashing yellow caution lights be placed on the stop ahead sign east of Poplar Grove Road; a letter will be sent to Bonus Township officials, requesting they conduct a speed study on Squaw Prairie Road, east of Poplar Grove Road.

Roads committee Chairman Brad Stark said the Commissioner Gustafson was waiting for enough good weather in order to do a speed study. County Engineer Rich Lundin said a device measuring speeds over a 24-year period would be available for the study; and the county will install red flashing lights on the stop signs along Squaw Prairie Road, at its intersection with Poplar Grove Road.

Also May 18, county board member Sherry Giesecke gave several economic development-related reports. Among them was Reboot Illinois.com ranking the city of Belvidere as No. 6 among 1,268 municipalities in the state when it came to starting a business.

There was some muffled disagreement from the audience to that statement, to which board Chairman Bob Walberg asked that there be no further comments.

“The comment period is over,” he said.

Turning to another matter, board member Cathy Ward asked of Growth Dimensions at its most recent meeting talked about the railroad proposal. Growth Dimensions is the marketing arm of the county, its villages and city of Belvidere.

Giesecke replied no, and suggested that Ward talk with the organization’s executive director, Jarid Funderburg.

“I talked to the executive director (about the rail line project) and he had no comment,” Chairman Walberg interjected.



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