Millburn to Proceed with Three-Way Stop at Glen Avenue and Lackawanna Place
Wednesday, June 20, 2012 • 11:12am
MILLBURN, NJ - The Millburn Township Committee tackled two pieces of old business concerning the downtown during last night’s meeting.
The first issue was placing a three-way stop at the corner of Glen Avenue and Lackawanna Place. The committee voted to proceed with the process of placing stop signs at the intersection.
Architects for the parking deck being built at the corner of Essex Street and Lackawanna Place had suggested putting a traffic control measure at the intersection. The committee stopped short of adding a traffic light.
The second issue was adding additional light fixtures and bollards, or short posts, on the block of Main Street between Essex Street and Millburn Avenue. After a lengthy discussion, the committee decided to look at a mock-up of bollards and chains as a first step in deciding what changes to make to the streetscape.
Committee member Robert Tillotson opened the discussion on changes to Main Street by saying, “I have some serious reservations regarding the project. The genesis of this, as I understand it, was that we removed some parking spaces from Main Street.”
Noting the goal should be pedestrian safety, Tillotson objected to adding light poles and bollards to an already cluttered environment. Furthermore, he said, a large amount of lighting would interfere with store windows and be distracting.
“Most of this would feel like you’re pulling into a Target parking lot,” he said. Architect John Buchholz, who had provided the committee with several proposals, then jumped into the discussion. He explained he is trying to get rid of the existing overhead lights and the bollards would not have to be lit.
Buchholz had suggested the light poles and bollards to match others that have been placed along the block of Main Street known as the riverwalk, from Essex Street to the Paper Mill Playhouse.
Committee member Theodore Bourke noted the committee’s goal should be to create a consistent look throughout the downtown.
After agreeing to provide a mock-up of bollards and chains, Buchholz said he is willing to create any number of proposals to satisfy committee members. Mayor Sandra Haimoff then assured, “We’ll get it together.”
In other business, Haimoff reported the township has received reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, of more than $961,000. That represents 75 percent of the damage done to the township by Hurricane Irene in August and the ice storm in October.
She also told fellow committee members the Mayors Coalition on the Rahway River had met with the Army Corps of Engineers, who said a plan to create a dry detention basin in the South Mountain Reservation would reduce the water level and considerably mitigate the possibility of flooding in Millburn.
The project could be pulled out of the corps’s larger project in the reservation and handled by the towns, according to Haimoff. Millburn and Cranford are taking the lead on petitioning legislators for a $370,000 appropriation for the legal, environmental and engineering work necessary to start the project.
Township Attorney Christopher Falcon announced that lawsuits brought against Township Administrator Timothy Gordon and Committee member Thomas McDermott have been dismissed. Those lawsuits had been brought by a property owner near Old Short Hills Park who has not been able to use his driveway because of Green Acres
The committee issued a proclamation expressing thanks for his bravery and heroism to Springfield Police Chief John Cook, who assisted June 8 at a two-car accident on Old Short Hills Road near the intersection of Fairfield Drive.
According to the proclamation, Cook witnessed the accident in which one car was overturned with four passengers entrapped and on fire and the other with two passengers, one of whom was injured. He activated his emergency lights and turned around, notifying his agency to contact the Millburn Police Department.
He then put out the fire with the extinguisher from his police vehicle and checked on the passengers of both cars. He observed one passenger with her seatbelt on complaining of pain, which he reported. "Chief Cook’s quick actions prevented a bad situation from become extremely worse,” the proclamation says.
In accepting the proclamation, Cook acknowledged assistance from other motorists who stopped to help and said he was honored and humbled to receive it.
The mayor also extended good wishes to Township Clerk Joanne Monarque, who is retiring this month after 11 years of service.