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To the Editor:

I was glad to see that the Police Commission re-addressed the traffic problems at the flagpole, but with all of the bantering it looks as if the safety issues will again have no solutions.

The comment made in the news report, “...there is no current push from the public to make changes,” may be true and the reason, at least from my perspective, is that concern from the public in the past achieved no change. The Chief was quoted to say that “...interest for change really has to come from the town before anything changes.” Well, how about some guidance?

Most suggestions seem to run into dead ends and excuses because our Main Street is a state route. For example, I have suggested that No Parking signs or at least painted slashes be made from the solid white line to the curb in front of Holcombe House, Trinity Church, the house on the corner of Church Hill and Main, and the Oberg building. The slashes on the road in front of the Oberg building would go from the solid line to the approved parking spaces. If done, this would improve visibility to the north and south for vehicles trying to cross Main Street from Church Hill and from West Street. Once you stop at the stop sign on Church Hill and West, you must proceed past the corners to see the North and South bound traffic which puts you in jeopardy.

The issues of excessive speed and passing on the right may be reduced by frequent, alternating presence of marked, manned police cars at the area near the flagpole. Police presence during the morning and evening commute time and when Rte. 84 backs up causing higher volume on Main Street would more than likely reduce traffic infractions at the flagpole.

Repainting of crosswalks should also be done, and West Street doesn’t even have marked crosswalks!

As a West Street resident for 42 years, I am definitely interested in seeing something done to improve safety at the flagpole area and at the crosswalks. I confess that I have been silent for several years now because of frustration. Major changes do not have to happen, but let’s please do something.

Karen Banks

43 West Street, Newtown June 11, 2021

Comments are open. Be civil.
1 comment
  1. voter says:

    It is ridiculous that we’ve watched this intersection fail for decades for anyone who is trying to turn left whether they are traveling on Route 25, approaching from Church Hill, or from West Street. Many drivers approaching from Church Hill trying to turn left on Route 25 engage in a dangerous game of chicken, pulling out into traffic until travelers on Route 25 are forced to yield their right-of-way. Those travelers on Route 25 who attempt to coax Church Hill traffic into the busy intersection “to be nice” are putting as many at risk as those passing on the right. This will always be a busy intersection and a rotary is a great answer but unfortunately we’ll see little change. See article from 2015 -“Flagpole Traffic Problems Under Review – Again”

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