Meridian officials say traffic is the city’s biggest problem

What is one of Meridian’s biggest challenges? Traffic, according to at least two elected officials.

The Statesman previously reported that Councilman Luke Cavener and newly elected Councilman John Overton said the city’s growth has put pressure on its roads. Former Mayor Tammy de Weerd also previously told the Statesman that traffic is the biggest problem for Meridian residents.

City spokeswoman Kelsey Winnett told the Statesman that there were 1,567 accidents in 2022, down slightly from 1,630 in 2021.

However, 2022 saw nearly as many pedestrian-related incidents as 2021.

Data from the Meridian Police Department shows there were 35 pedestrian accidents in 2022, just one more than in 2021, Winnett said. The data does not reflect December because reports are still being processed, he said.

The data also revealed a list of the top five roads with the most accidents. The list is arranged from most to least accidents.

  1. Cherry / Fairview
  2. Meridian
  3. Linder
  4. Locust
  5. Ten miles

The parents of a teenager killed in a Meridian High road crash want change

Of the incidents involving pedestrians in Meridian, 34 resulted in injuries and one fatality during 2022, Winnett said.

The pedestrian fatality occurred Nov. 2 when 16-year-old Terry Binder of Meridian High School was struck by a pickup truck on his way to school north of Ten Mile Road and West Pine Avenue.

Joshua Binder, Terry Binder’s father, told the Statesman in an email that his family has lived in Meridian since 2013 and has noticed an increase in traffic. He said that he is upset that students are late for class, competing with drivers who are rushing to work. Terry, he said, decided to walk to school that day because he was running late.

“About 3-4 days a week we had phone notifications that buses were 10-25 minutes late,” he said. “By that time Terry had already left the bus stop, thinking he had missed the bus and gone to school.”

Binder said her son walked to school to avoid being arrested for being late. He died less than a mile from the high school.

“I go to where Terry’s life was taken almost every day,” he said. “The crosswalk at Pine and Ten Mile never goes for a signal. I hit the button and go through it many times. It gets to the point where I cross without a signal. The school zone is half a block from where Terry was killed. will arrive.”

Binder said he wants to extend the school zone to Pine Avenue because it is the main road to the high school. Binder said he would also like to see a skywalk so pedestrians can cross safely.

In December, the Binder family agreed to sponsor Meridian Art Commission who wrapped a utility box at Pine Avenue and Ten Mile Road in a piece of art from their son.

“He was a straight-A student who loved theater and drama,” she said of her son. “He loved to paint and play so many instruments. He was a man beyond his years. He was the most amazing person I’ve ever met.”

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