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Sign Added to Create Township's First Four-Way Stop

School Avenue-Floral Street intersection addressed after speeding concerns raised.

The Committee unanimously approved a new stop sign at School Avenue and Floral Street at its meeting Thursday.

The intersection, which is near , and , will become the first intersection in town with a four-way stop sign.

The additional stop sign was recommended by the Safe Routes to School Committee, and by the . Chief John Paton said residents from Dale Drive and the Rolling Knolls neighborhood increasingly use the intersection to reach Lafayette Avenue.

Speed has increased over time, and "we've had some near misses there," Paton said. "This would get everyone to slow down."

Two residents near the intersection applauded the ordinance during the public comments section. Elena Lagunowich said she walks her children to school each day, and "I would never let them cross that intersection alone. Everyone goes 45 miles an hour," she said.

The speed limit in the neighborhood is 25 miles-per-hour.

Tom McEnroe lives near the intersection and works as a New Jersey State Trooper.

"The speed limit is routinely not observed," he said, and to his mind, "a four-way stop sign is the perfect solution."

The intersection is near a hill, and several residents have high vegetation. Motorists who cross on Floral Street sometimes cannot be seen by those at the stop sign.

A third resident of the neighborhood, Ron Steinberg, said he did not believe a four-way stop would solve the traffic and speeding problems. "I think that's going to increase traffic there," Steinberg said, citing construction vehicles, school and resident traffic and lawn service trucks which drive to the area.

"I've been there since 1983," he said. "I see a lot of roll-throughs because the vegetation is so high."

Steinberg said he believed trimming the vegetation at the intersection would increase visibility and correct the problem. He also suggested more signs giving the speed limit, and stricter enforcement of the speed limit.

"You can condition people" to drive 25 miles-per-hour in the intersection, he said.

McEnroe disagreed. "I've cut back my bushes, so my question is, what next? Do you want me to take them out and sand my yard up to the house?"

Steinberg said he looked up four-way stop signs in the Motor Vehicle Commissions handbook. He said the directions for how to behave at a four-way stop were vague, and asked if the township really wanted to take this step.

Mayor Nicole Hanger, however, said she would defer to the Police Department's recommendations.

The rest of the committee followed suit, and the ordinance adding the two stop signs to the preexisting signs passed unanimously.

Township Attorney Carl Woodward pointed out that Floral Street was incorrectly called "Floral Avenue" in the draft. The ordinance was amended before it was passed.

Laura Ali September 14, 2012 at 12:47 PM
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chatham7 September 15, 2012 at 12:34 AM
what does The Colony Club Member Satisfaction Survey have to do with this story?

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