July 19, 2014 at 6:31 AM
MILLBURN, NJ – The Township Committee passed a resolution at its meeting this week to adopt a Complete Streets policy, which will assure that future streetscape planning and improvements will take into account not only drivers but all users of the roads.
“What I hope this will do is make Millburn safer for everybody, by creating a community that is geared toward accommodating the needs of all users of the road, including pedestrians, cyclists, mobility impaired people, parents with strollers and automobile users,” said Jennifer Duckworth, Chair of Millburn’s Environmental Commission.
Whenever the Township seeks to update a road, there will be a checklist that the Department of Public Works will go through to make sure that the needs of all who might use that road are considered.
A Complete Streets proposal was first made to the Township Committee in March of 2013 by Jerry Fried, Lead Ambassador at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy, Rutgers University. When a year had passed with no action on the topic by the Township Committee, the Environmental Commission raised the issue again and presented a draft proposal. Township attorney Kit Falcon revised the draft and the TC passed the resolution unanimously on Tuesday night.
At the same meeting, Mayor Robert Tillotson reestablished a Transportation Sub-Committee, which will be led by Committee members Ted Bourke and Ian Mount.
“I am hopeful that this group will meet and be a conduit for communication between Millburn and the county as far as traffic issues go in downtown Millburn,” said Duckworth. Some decisions depend on the county, as some of the main thoroughfares in town are county roads. One such issue is the intersection of Main Street and Millburn Avenue. The timing of the traffic lights has been criticized as causing traffic to back up due to poor timing with the light at the intersection Main and Essex Streets. At the same time, pedestrians have been struck by cars in that intersection often enough to indicate that changes are needed. The new committee may be looking into this in the coming months.