DeWine Promises Safety Improvements In East Cleveland
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and East Cleveland Mayor Brandon King told an emotional crowd another traffic light will be added at Euclid and Marloes avenues after a mother of seven was killed several blocks away.
State Sen. Kenny Yuko, State Rep. Kent Smith and other members of the administration also attended.
Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) crews installed a traffic light at Euclid Avenue and Stanwood Road Tuesday after removing one in November. Terra Nolden, 36, was killed crossing that intersection Dec 30.
"In the finished product, we will be looking at pedestrian crosswalks in which you can push the paddle and it will light up so that vehicles will know pedestrians are attempting to cross the street and it will have, like, 20 seconds," King said.
DeWine spoke with Nolden's brother, Brutell Dandridge, before addressing the media.
"When you talk to family members, you really get some idea of the great tragedy and when you have someone who, a mother of seven children, so certainly the media has brought home the tragedy," DeWine said.
ODOT expedited the process to get the light installed after Nolden's death last week.
“Look, we gotta move," DeWine said of his conversations with ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks. "I mean, this has got to move as quickly as we can and I don't care if it's the weekend, I don't care what it is, we've got to move forward."
The traffic light was taken out and due to be replaced with an upgraded model in the spring, in spite of being an intersection ODOT determined was dangerous enough to require a light in a 2012 traffic study.
"These things are not historically, not traditionally, things that the Ohio Department of Transportation does," DeWine said. "These are normally done by cities, but we also understand that East Cleveland is in a unique situation financially."
DeWine was asked if he would've visited today if Nolden hadn't been killed.
"Look, the project, the mayor and I have been talking," DeWine said. "I've been promising the mayor I was going to make a visit. Would it have been today? Maybe not, but it was going to be soon anyway. The mayor and I have already been talking about that."
DeWine said he will continue to work with King on assistance for projects in East Cleveland that would usually paid for by the city. King says he's encouraged by his conversations with the governor regarding both safety and economic development projects.