Complete Streets Initiative Comes to Downtown

Deputy Mayor Bourke Discusses Complete Streets Credits: Cathy Schleicher Harvey

Yesterday, the Complete Streets Sub-Committee hosted two public open houses to introduce an early, conceptual design that aims to address pedestrian safety issues in downtown Millburn through a complete streets program that seeks to balance the needs of all users in the downtown. Arterial & Sam Schwartz Engineering, the team chosen by the subcommittee to lead this Complete Streets Initiative, walked members of the community through the initial concepts and gathered valuable input from residents and downtown business owners of the issues that have plagued the downtown for years.

The Township Committee approved a resolution establishing and adopting a Complete Streets policy for the township. The members of the Complete Streets Sub-Committee are W. Theodore Bourke, Millburn’s Deputy Mayor, and Ian Mount, a member of the Township Committee.

The township policy is modeled on the New Jersey Department of Transportation's Complete Streets policy. Essex County was the first to adopt a Complete Streets in New Jersey. Complete Streets are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities. As John McCormick of Sam Schwartz Engineering explained “it is a system that provides balance between pedestrians and vehicles. It succeeds by reeducating people and changing their behavior and restores courtesy to the street.” There are many aspects to the plan: signage and way-finding, reverse-angle parking, shared lane markings to communicate that vehicles should share the road with bicyclists, enhanced mid-block crossings, tabled intersections, accessible curb ramps for the disabled, curb bump-outs and a uniform street furniture palette (e.g. matching garbage cans.)

Sign Up for E-News

In the fall, Sam Schwartz Engineering will conduct an aerial traffic study by helicopter on one weekday during the later afternoon into the early evening. It is intended to assess the number of vehicles originating in and staying in the township as well as the number of vehicle whose drivers use Millburn as a “cut through” to get to other destinations, usually to avoid Routes 24 and 78. As James Ribaudo, project manager with Arterial stated “… traffic is like water – it finds the easiest way to go. The Sub-committee’s goal is to reduce cut-through traffic making the downtown less congested while at the same time improving local vehicular circulation that better supports downtown businesses”.

The Arterial Team has proposed a series of moves to deal with the congestion in downtown Millburn. It emphasizes that these ideas must be implemented as a holistic approach and not piecemeal as has been attempted in the past. The first is to designate Old Short Hills Road where it turns into Main Street one way south between Essex Street and Millburn Avenue in an effort to reduce cut through traffic. The second move eliminates left hand turns from Essex Street onto Main Street to simplify the intersection and reduce vehicular/pedestrian conflicts. The Third move creates a new street adjacent to Town Hall that picks up the left hand turn traffic off of Essex Street that was eliminated at Main Street. The Fourth move turns Lackawanna Place one way going north between Millburn Ave and Essex Street. The final move makes Essex Street two-way between Lackawanna Place & Millburn Avenue to better facilitate traffic flow from the Train Station and parking garage.

Between July and October 2015 the consultants anticipate concepts being further developed and refined into a final schematic design. Initial construction is anticipated to begin in the summer of 2016.

Deputy Mayor Bourke stated that the cost of implementing the Complete Streets initiative will be paid in part by grants but the bulk of the cost will be paid from bonds – long term capital that Millburn can afford because two items in its budget will come off the books in 2016 or 2017. The two items are the Paper Mill Playhouse and the former Rimback Storage Facility. Bourke feels that the new traffic plan will greatly improve the downtown without costing taxpayers any extra money.


TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Millburn/Short Hills

National Weather Service Issues Heat Advisory thru Sunday for Millburn Township

June 30, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ —  A heat wave rolling into the area is expected to last through Sunday, with the National Weather Service (NWS) calling for a heat advisory for Millburn Township through 12:00 pm Sunday. However, an excessive heat watch runs through Monday evening. 

According to the NWS, the heat index values are projected in the mid to upper 90s today and ...

Millburn Police Issue Multiple Summons Based on Outstanding Warrants

July 17, 2018

On July 11, 2018 Millburn Police Officer Shanahan stopped a 2014 Honda Accord on Millburn/Vauxhall for speeding. The investigation led to the arrest of 22 year old Lyes Yakoubi of Jersey City on an outstanding traffic warrant out of West Windsor. Mr. Yakoubi was issued a summons and released with a new court date.

On July 11, 2018 Millburn Police Sergeant Delrusso observed a 2007 Acura MDX on ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 18

On this week’s AtlantiCast, you’ll find out how accessing care at Atlantic Health System is now easier, more affordable and closer to home than ever, learn which item from the produce aisle could be the newest weapon against cancer, see what Atlantic Health System, the New York Times and Instagram all have in common and much more.



To Our Current and Future Representatives

July 17, 2018

To Our Current and Future Representatives - Wherever They May Be:

We can never forget we are a nation of immigrants. 

We cannot fall prey to fear, ignorance and anger when we  have been historically driven by freedom and justice. 

We must have the courage and will to fight hate, bigotry and prejudice. 

We must not wake up to what we hoped was a bad dream and ...

GRAMMY Award-Winning Chanticleer Returns to Summit for Encore

July 22, 2018

Lightning is about to strike twice in Summit, New Jersey, as Grammy Award-winning a cappella vocalists Chanticleer close out the St. John’s Summit Concert Series’ fourth season on July 28 at 8:00 pm. The performance was not part of the original schedule for the season and has been billed as a surprise encore.

Celebrating 40 years this season, Chanticleer is a vocal tour ...

Meadowbrook Country Day Camp to Hold "Summer Splash 2018" Open House Event on Saturday, July 28

LONG VALLEY, NJ - Looking for a day camp for the kids for next year? Those interested in visiting Meadowbrook Country Day Camp are invited to attend “Summer Splash 2018,” on Saturday, July 28, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The camp is located at 73 East Valley Brook Road, in Long Valley, NJ. The Rain Date is Sunday, July 29.

“Seeing camp during the summer is a perfect way ...

Murphy Administration Takes Action to Help Smokers Quit

Eliminates Prior Approval for Medicaid Tobacco Cessation Medications; Counseling Options to be Expanded

TRENTON, NJ – The Murphy administration on Monday announced new steps to help New Jersey Medicaid recipients quit using tobacco by making it easier to receive tobacco cessation medications and counseling.

“Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death and disease ...

5 Simple Ways to Save Water this Summer

According to the L.A. Times, the average American uses an estimated 98 gallons of water EACH day.  

Here are five simple ways you can save water, to help you conserve water this summer and take some pressure off of your drains.

1. Unless you are using it, turn the faucet off. How many of us still leave the water running while we shave or brush our teeth?According to ...