Growth in a metro area like Valdosta brings to mind a faster pace of life for residents. The addition of houses and businesses to previously undeveloped portions of the county, however, facilitate changes in speed limits that, out of necessity, slow drivers down.

Some people are complaining about the change in the speed limit from 55 to 45 mph on Inner Perimeter Road. Soon others will complain about the new traffic lights on North Valdosta Road and Highway 41 North.

What's needed in these cases is an understanding that growth always necessitates changes. More development means more people driving in and out of business parking lots, leaving to and from residences. It would be the height of irresponsibility to allow drivers to cruise at 55 mph through a busy area, slamming on brakes all the while to avoid collisions with those making sudden stops.

Inner Perimeter Road is not a rural, undeveloped road. As with Highway 41 and North Valdosta Road, Inner Perimeter is rapidly being developed with housing and commercial interests. Decisions must be made concerning public safety and traffic management. The city and county deserve credit for keeping ahead of changes and planning in advance for the area's future needs.

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