Community Commentary -- Jack Sheffield

"Somebody's gon'er get kilt." One of the guys in my Burbank Senior

Golf Club group said that the other day as the subject, as usual, got

around to the really serious traffic problem we have where Walnut crosses

the DeBell Golf Course parking lot entrance across from the clubhouse and

pro shop.

Since the opening of the great nature center about a mile up Walnut --

where it dead-ends at the trail heads leading into our beautiful canyons

-- visitor car and mountain bike traffic has tremendously increased.

Coming back from the nature center is a steep, downhill grade, and it is

not uncommon for both autos and bikes to reach very high speeds

(certainly far in excess of the 25 mph limit), and go zinging by the

parking lot entrance where, at any given time, a dozen or more golfers

are strolling or riding golf carts across the street to the starter's

shack.

On tournament days (the men's seniors, for example, will field a 140

player "shotgun" the first Thursday of every month, with all 140 players

going to their assigned holes at one time) it is not inconceivable to

imagine a dozen or more Burbankers leaving this planet in a single

accident.

All of our clubs (seniors, juniors, men and lady clubs) have met

repeatedly with city officials to express our concerns. We are politely

and "off the record" told that a stop sign, crosswalk, speed hump or even

a warning sign placed farther up the hill will not happen unless or until

someone is killed, maimed for life or seriously injured. Even sympathetic

cops have told us (off the record) that getting the Burbank traffic

department to put a stop sign would take a lawyer and years of

bureaucratic red tape.

But the sign would go up within days of a fatality? Why do we have to

wait until someone is killed?

Months ago, we signed a polite petition requesting a stop sign. The

powers that be do not know what happened to that petition.

Summer is coming, and the new nature center is a great attraction that

will draw crowds of nature lovers daily up that beautiful canyon road.

That means the chances of a terrible accident happening will be vastly

increased.

May I suggest that if you value the life of your senior parent,

teenage golf enthusiast, or your own enthusiasm for the great game of

gold at DeBell Municipal Golf Course, that you use this paper to call

City Hall's attention to a disaster in the making. One that can be

avoided for a few hundred dollars worth of stop sign.

One final word: Someone at City Hall, in his great engineering wisdom,

decided that spending umpteem thousands of taxpayer dollars to move back

the trash bin less than a hundred feet (a project requiring a full crew

of men more than a week and entailed building a new block structure to

house the trash bin) would allow golfers a better view of death

approaching. We still can't see those lethal machines boring down on us,

and that is not a feasible solution anyway.

Give us a simple stop sign, please. And put a caution sign halfway up

the hill toward the new nature center, warning motorists and bikers that

a stop sign lies ahead.

JACK SHEFFIELD

Burbank

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