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Barriers on the controversial and deadly stretch of Philip Goldson “speedway” to be modified

HeadlineBarriers on the controversial and deadly stretch of Philip Goldson “speedway” to be modified

BELIZE CITY, Fri. Feb. 8, 2019– In response to the public outcry to Government after teacher Marlena Mortis, 23, of Dolphin Avenue, Buttonwood Bay, was knocked down and killed on the Philip Goldson Highway while crossing the dangerous speedway near the DK Super Store to catch a bus to come to Belize City, the Ministry of Works has agreed to insert two pedestrian crossings in the controversial stretch of highway.

The stretch is located between Mile 2 and 3 on the highway between the first roundabout near the Scotia Bank when coming into the city from Ladyville, and the second roundabout, located near the Shell Depot/Mirab Ashley complex, which covers a distance of about 1 mile, with no pedestrian crossing between the two roundabouts.

Major Errol Gentle, CEO in the Ministry of Works, said today that the road was designed to be a speedway to meet International standards, and as such, there were no plans to put in pedestrian crossings other than the ones near the two roundabouts, but the public outcry is well-warranted and in view of the fatality and the cries of the public, they will revisit the road design with engineers to see how the modification and crossings can be made.

Gentle said that any modification of the road means that funds will have to be found to build the crossings, be it an overpass, or pedestrian crossing.

Presently, persons who want to cross the road must walk or drive almost half a mile to access one of the two crossings to cross the road to the other side.

ASP Alejandro Cowo, police’s Commander of Crimes Investigation, said that the driver who knocked down Marlena Mortis last Monday morning has been issued with a Notice of Intended Prosecution (NIP) and the files have been sent to the Director of Public Prosecution for her directives.

Cowo noted that where Mortis was knocked down was not a crossing.

The difficulty and danger of crossing the highway has been well-documented on social media by persons who take videos of adults and children, with their parents, jumping over the concrete barriers to access the bus, or businesses on the other side.

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