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Some neighbors have mixed feelings about new speed cameras coming to South Side Chicago community

Neighbors frustrated with 'speed trap' in South Side Chicago neighborhood
Neighbors frustrated with 'speed trap' in South Side Chicago neighborhood 01:59

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Neighbors on Chicago's South Side say they are being set up to get caught in a speed trap.

Three different speed enforcement cameras are being installed in Beverly – just blocks away from each other. There are already speed cameras in place off 103rd Street and Western Avenue, and now cameras are coming just blocks away outside St. John Fisher School, 10200 S. Washtenaw Ave.

"I don't want it going all over Beverly," said Betsy Stetter.

There is a reason Stetter, a longtime Beverly resident, wears a bright reflective jacket while walking her dog.

"I wear this coat so that people can see me," Stetter said.

In addition to 103rd Street, a camera will pop up along Western Avenue at 105th Street near King-Lockhart Memorial Park – and a third is coming at 99th Street off Longwood Drive.

"Why three all of sudden?" said Stetter.

The cameras are designed to slow down drivers. But some wonder if it is more about green dollars than green lights.

"If they think it's going to work, but I also think there's money involved as well," Stetter said.

At Color Me Nail Bar, 1810 W. 99th St., the front window gives the owner a clear view of what she calls an ongoing problem.

"Because of the daycare next to me and across the street, I'm fearful sometimes of kids being hit, or adults being hit walking across the street - because they don't respect the pedestrians," said Color Me Nail Bar owner Kimberly Buford.

Even Metra riders admit crossing 99th Street is not easy.

"They are flying down here all the time – and so many cars have been hit. And so many people, they come around here because somebody's going to come here," Metra rider Leslie Brown said as she pointed to the treacherous intersections behind her, "and they're going way too fast. They do need one here."

Warning signs will be posted near each camera, and the Chicago Department of Transportation will give drivers a 30-day warning period. After that, the tickets will be enforced – with a fine of $35 for six miles over the limit.

"The fines they're pretty low," said Stetter. "I don't know how much they're going to deter people."

Fines jump to $100 for anything 11 mph over the speed limit. While safety is the motive, many say they do not want to see every main road in Beverly turn into a speed trap.

Ald. Matt O'Shea (19th) told CBS 2 the current budget does not allow for new cameras beyond what is currently in the ward.

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