CHATHAM, NJ - Chatham residents, anticipating the subject of vacating paper streets that were discussed at a meeting last June, came to the Borough of Chatham Council meeting on Monday to urge the council to maintain pedestrian access to these "cut-thru" or paths.
No action has been taken at this time but will be discussed at the next regular meeting of the council on Feb. 26. The borough is considering requests by homeowners to vacate the paper portion of streets known as Greenwood Avenue and Vine Street.
The Greenwood Avenue path cut-thru gives children walking to Lafayette School a way to avoid the Fairview Avenue traffic on the way to school and use the Dellwood Avenue path to the back of Lafayette and the high school.
The paper portion at the end of Vine Street has a path that connects to Tallmadge and then access to Shepard Kollock Park without having to traverse Main Street.
Summit Avenue resident Jill Critchley Weber, also the president of the Chatham BOE, addresses the council during the public portion of the meeting Monday
Chatham Borough Mayor Bruce Harris answered "transparency" questions by explaining the process used before taking any action (see video below). The vacation of paper streets would have to be done by ordinance, which would include a public hearing.
Borough Council member Bob Weber, the husband of Jill Critchley Weber, is advocating for the Vine Street path to Tallmadge to remain open. He also noted (in video below) that it will give residents easier and safer access to new Riverside Trail, which is now being completed. The trail is planned to run south along the Passaic River in an easement the Borough has to Summit Avenue, ending by the Passaic River bridge abutment.