Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Surf City considers golf cart ban on Topsail Island highways, public hearing tonight

Paul Ragan, 37, a resident of Carolina Beach and long time employee of GE Power, drives his golf cart down Lake Park Boulevard in Carolina Beach, 8:46 p.m. (Port City Daily photo | Mark Darrough)
Residents of Kure Beach drive down Lake Park Boulevard in Carolina Beach, where golf carts are common and require a permit that authorizes usage on roads posted 35 miles per hour or less. (Port City Daily photo | Mark Darrough)

Update Tuesday, 8 p.m. — Surf City Town Council voted 5-0 against the motion to petition NCDOT to ban street legal golf carts on island highways. Council preferred to keep the town’s existing ordinances in place for the time being.

SURF CITY — Citing safety concerns, Surf City may ask the state to ban golf carts and other low-speed vehicles (LSVs) from driving on the new high-rise bridge and state-maintained highways of Topsail Island.

After a public hearing Tuesday evening, a vote will go to Surf City council members to pass a resolution formally requesting the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) to consider prohibiting the use of LSVs on the new high-rise Surf City Bridge and state highways located on the island side of the town. These roads include N.C. 50 south of the roundabout (made up of South Topsail Drive and, further south, South Shore Drive) and N.C. 210 north of the roundabout (North New River Drive).

The resolution states that Surf City Town Council “has made the determination that golf carts and similar low-speed vehicles” operating on those roads “create a safety concern.”

RELATED: Golf cart rentals and taxis coming to Kure Beach after Town Council approves special use permits 

Although those roads are limited to 35 miles per hour by the NCDOT — and state law allows low-speed vehicles on state-maintained roads with posted speed limits of 35 miles per hour or less — the resolution points to authority only held by the state transportation agency to prohibit such vehicles.

“The Department of Transportation may prohibit the operation of low-speed vehicles on any road or highway if it determines that the prohibition is necessary in the interest of safety,” according to the North Carolina ordinance outlining LSV regulations.

According to the town’s website, the proposed ordinance would still allow street legal golf carts to drive on town-maintained streets and to cross state highways. The resolution only addresses state highways on the island side of the town, including the bridge; on the mainland N.C. 210 has a speed limit of 45 miles per hour, thus prohibiting golf carts under current state law.

“The Surf City Town Council would like to hear your comments on prohibiting low speed vehicles (street legal golf carts) on State highways,” according to the town’s website.

Surf City Town Council meets Tuesday, June 4, at 6:30 p.m. in Town Hall.

Read the town’s resolution to request a prohibition of low-speed vehicles on state-maintained roads below:

A resolution requesting the NCDOT to impose a golf cart ban on state-maintained roads, as well as the new Surf City high-rise bridge, will go before a Town Council vote. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Town of Surf City)
A resolution requesting the NCDOT to impose a golf cart ban on state-maintained roads, as well as the new Surf City high-rise bridge, will go before a Town Council vote. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Town of Surf City)

 

 

Related Articles