20210617 - CSAC Minutes

ATTENDEES:
 
CSAC Members/ Liaisons: Anastasia Bamberg, Sheila Brogan, Kelly Buchsbaum, Sgt. John Chuck, Charles S. Di Marco, Joyce Docktor, Councilmember Lorraine Reynolds, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Barbara Sacks
 
Others: Robert Upton
 
OLD BUSINESS:
 
1)  Franklin Avenue Corridor-- No advancement of review by County. Resurfacing project proceeding and may be completed first.
 
2)  Pedestrian/Bike SRTS Grants-- NV5 work continues. Presentation to Village Council expected on July 7th.
 
3)  CBDAC--Transit Village concept discussed. Pedestrian Plaza starts in July. BID discussed. Website to promote CBD activities being considered. Poster/Art promotion for empty storefronts being reviewed. 
 
4) SSATF-- No activities planned until regular school schedule resumes. 
 
5)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks-- 2021 Capital budget includes $50,000. Sidewalk project is planned to start at North Monroe Street and proceed east. West Glen Avenue resident, Mr. Upton, expressed continuing interest in this project and has maintained contact with Mr. Rutishauser and other Village staff.
 
6)  West Glen Avenue/ North Monroe Street Signal--Capital funding available. Work will be coordinated with adjacent sidewalk project.
 
7)  Ped-Actuated Crossing Signal--Equipment for installation at West Glen Avenue/ Hillcrest Road has been ordered. 
 
8)  Smart Street NJ-- Ms. Remis is pursuing obtaining banners through this organization and is coordinating support/ permits, etc. with the Chamber of  Commerce and Village.
 
9)  RHS Drop-Off/Pick-Up-- Ms. Sacks gave a detailed report on her personal experience from May 23rd regarding a safety-related situation and the level of Police enforcement along North Irving Street during sports activities. The consensus agreed that adequate parking was available at the RHS lot and both added enforcement and education (in addition to the efforts by Nancy Bigos on May 24, 2021 as reported in the CSAC Minutes of the May 20th meeting) was desirable and needed. Sgt. Chuck will review the situation.
 
10) Girl Scout Silver Project-- Mr. Di Marco described the feedback provided to Ms. Fishkin suggesting concentrating on educational projects related to pedestrian safety (i.e., pedestrian and driver rights and responsibilities; commonsense measures to enhance safety and address walker and driver distraction, awareness of traffic conditions, etc.)
 
11) Bryden Place/Oak Street- Glenwood Road-- Rail crossing remains closed. No issues have been reported to Police. Historic traffic information is available and additional counts are expected to be collected to measure changes in traffic patterns having an impact on safety.
 
NEW BUSINESS: 
 
1)  CSAC Schedule-- The July and August meetings are cancelled. In the event an emerging issue arises during the next two months,  a meeting would be called.
 
 
 
NEXT MEETING: Thursday, September 16, 2021-7:30 PM in the Garden Room at Village Hall
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20210520 - CSAC Minutes

ATTENDEES: (by ZOOM Meeting)


CSAC Members/Liaisons: Sheila Brogan, Kelly Buchsbaum, Charles S. Di Marco, Joyce Docktor, Robert Fuhrman, Jane Remis, Councilmember Lorraine Reynolds, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Barbara Sacks, Officer Raymond Tarino


Others: Madeline Fishkin, Andy Keesing, Linda Keesing, Mayor Susan Knudsen, Barbara Reilly, Charles Reilly,  


OLD BUSINESS:


1)  Franklin Avenue Corridor--Concept plans continue under review by Bergen County. Resurfacing may advance ahead of Corridor work.


2)  Pedestrian/ Bike SRTS Grants--NV5 work continues. Mr. Rutishauser will review progress.


3)  CBDAC-- Mr. Di Marco relayed Ms. Bamberg's information regarding plans for a weekend pedestrian mall along East Ridgewood Avenue from July 10th through September 6th. No further discussions on Transit Village application.


4)  SSATF-- No activity.


5)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks--Council resolution supporting plan underway. Mr. Rutishauser expects portions of sidewalk with manageable conditions may advance prior to sections having more challenging physical and design issues.


6)  West Glen Avenue/ North Monroe Street Signal-- Coordinated with sidewalk project.


7)  Ped-Actuated Crossing Signals (3 Locations)-- Capital budget item approved. Initial installation expected to be West Glen Avenue/ Hillcrest Road.


8)  Smart Street NJ-- Ms. Remis reports efforts continuing. Banners and similar promotional activities being considered.


9)  RHS Drop-Off/ Pick-Up-- Change in school schedule procedure appears to be operating well with no undue safety concerns. Ms. Sacks thanked the Police for enforcement [of the STOP regulations at Overbrook Road and North Irving Street with an unmarked car because students and other pedestrians cannot cross there safely, she stated] and noted the need for added information and enforcement for safety reasons along North Irving Street during sports activities. Ms. Brogan will contact the schools and Parks & Recreation to remind coaches and parents of the need to observe parking regulations near playing fields. ( NOTE: On May 24th, Nancy Bigos asked all coaches, officials and other sports leaders to remind visiting and resident coaches, participants and parents to observe all safety and parking regulations near Village and Board of Education recreational fields).

 


NEW BUSINESS:


1)  Age-Friendly Ridgewood Sidewalk Audit-2021-- Ms. Brogan distributed the A-FR Report to CSAC members previously sent to the Village. She described the report and the progress made by CBD owners and the Village when the earlier audit was issued. The discussion focused on the need to maintain a safe and inviting walking environment which would enhance the attractiveness of the CBD for seniors and all pedestrians. A sustained and funded effort of maintenance and renewal by the municipality and owners will be needed. Jurisdictional responsibility questions regarding the brick border and accessible ramps at crosswalks need to be resolved.


2)  HSA Liaison-- Mary Micale, new HSA President, will be join CSAC in September replacing Kelly Buchsbaum.


3)  Maddy Fishkin-- Girl Scout Silver Project-- Ms. Fishkin, a GWMS 8th Grade Student, discussed her interest in developing a pedestrian/safety initiative. She described several areas of concern which were possible project material and asked for comments and suggestions from the CSAC. Numerous ideas were presented and discussed including examples of earlier Scout projects. The Engineering Division and Police were offered as resources for identifying potential topics and areas of interest .The CSAC consensus suggested she focus on efforts to identify problems and specific practices/locations and, in coordination with the Scout  Advisor, develop the outline of her project. Members agreed to forward suggestions to her at madelinefishkin@gmail.com and to Leila Nosrati at lnosrati@gmail.com.


4)  Bryden Place/ Oak Street-- Impacts of Glenwood Road One-Way-- The Reillys and the Keesings discussed the existing condition of  southbound vehicles traveling along North Maple Avenue turning west on Bryden Place and south on Oak Street to bypass the signal at West Glen Avenue. The current closing of the railroad crossing at the HoHoKus station and future {conversation} [conversion] of Glenwood Road to one-way eastbound raised the potential for an increase in the traffic using Bryden/Oak to bypass the signal. Various options to address the issue were presented including turn restrictions, signal timing changes and added turn lanes to control and/or reduce delays on the southbound approach to the signal. The consensus reached was to monitor the situation while the temporary closing existed and to measure the vehicle count information when the one-way became effective. Officer Tarino agreed to gather traffic count information during the closing and to conduct similar counts when the permanent rules were in effect. The operational difficulties for adding lanes, adjusting signal timings and obtaining County support for turn restrictions and enforcement were discussed. As a future consideration based on the actual experience measured when the one-way was implemented, Mr. Di Marco offered the possible conversion of Bryden Place to be one-way eastbound. If adopted, this measure would ban the by-pass movement, require little special enforcement attention, avoid the need for County approval and allow permanent adjustments, if needed, to the signal timing. It was agreed to wait until the "before" and "after" counts and observations were completed in the next few months before advancing any specific proposals.


NEXT MEETING: June 17, 2021

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20210415 - CSAC Minutes

ATTENDEES: (by ZOOM Meeting)


CSAC Members/Liaisons: Anastasia Bamberg, Sheila Brogan, Charles S. Di Marco, Joyce Docktor, Robert Fuhrman, Jane Remis, Councilmember Lorraine Reynolds, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Barbara Sacks


Others: None

 


OLD BUSINESS:


1)  Franklin Avenue Corridor-- Concept plans being reviewed by Engineering/Council.


2)  Pedestrian/ Bike SRTS Grants-- NV5 preparing plans/specifications; coordinating with NJDOT and USDOT on grant requirements.


3)  CBDAC-- The Transit Village designation process presentation to the Village Council is planned on April 28th. Designation allows better access to grant opportunities. Downtown in Ridgewood events are being planned for weekends in the summer.


4)  SSATF-- No activity.


5)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks-- Concept plan presentation to Village Council not scheduled- end of April is being considered.


6)  West Glen Avenue/ North Monroe Street Signal-- Concept plan is coordinated with sidewalk project.


7)  Ped-Actuated Crossing Signals (3 Locations)-- 2021 Capital Budget item still under consideration.


8)  Smart Street NJ-- Ms. Remis reviewed possible activities aimed at securing grants with other community groups, for example, AARP, Age-Friendly Ridgewood, and safety materials (including street banners). 

 


NEW BUSINESS:

 


1)  RHS Drop-Off./ Pick-Up-- Discussion of new school schedule starting April 19th and the need to alert drivers/ students of the changes being made. The concern relates to pick-up/drop-off safety needs when up to 70% of RHS students return to full-time morning classes and return home for on-line lessons in the afternoon. Similar concerns relate to remaining schools although these buildings have a higher proportion of nearby homes. The safety concerns along North Irving Street near RHS, an issue discussed at the October 15, 2020 CSAC meeting, were reviewed.


2)  The Police Chief is ending the temporary suspension of enforcement of residential area parking regulations as of May 1st. The need for publicizing this change by e-mail, phone alert, etc. was encouraged. It was noted with regret that the Police Department's CSAC liaison was not available at the meeting to help the facilitate discussions and advance actions related to New Business Items 1&2.

 


NEXT MEETING: May 20, 2021 at 7:30 PM (by ZOOM).

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20210318 - CSAC Minutes

ATTENDEES: (by ZOOM Meeting)


CSAC Members/ Liaisons: Anastasia Bamberg, Kelly Buchsbaum, Charles S. DiMarco, Joyce Docktor, Robert Fuhrman, Jane Remis, Councilmember Lorraine Reynolds, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Barbara Sacks


Others: None


OLD BUSINESS:


1)  Franklin Avenue Corridor-- Village and County are advancing on plans and required municipal agreements. Two minor Right-of Way (ROW) takings are anticipated. No budgeting or construction schedule is available.


2)  Pedestrian/Bike SRTS Grants-- NV5 work continues. No meetings in past month.


3)  CBDAC-- Ms. Bamberg related the group's interest in having Ridgewood designated as a "Transit Village" which would enable eligibility for certain development grants. The criteria for the Transit Village designation include: rail/ bus facilities, mixed-use development and minimum density requirements. The municipality must support the Transit Village application by formal resolution.  
The Downtown in Ridgewood events are likely to be limited to once monthly in the summer due to staffing limitations.
The concept for relocating the bus terminal at the rail station was discussed. The advantages include eliminating most bus trips and improving the safety and pedestrian environment along East Ridgewood Avenue, offering a convenient, centralized transit interface and  enhancing the attractiveness of the west side business district. Concerns were raised including any impacts related to changes in bus volumes at the Franklin Avenue underpass, reduction of parking spaces to accommodate bus turn radius needs and other safety issues. The availability of commuter parking in the Hudson Street Garage was noted as a potential offset to any reduction of parking at the rail station.
A pilot program to construct bollards and expand the sidewalk/street areas for dining is being considered.


4)  SSATF-- No activity is expected prior to a resumption of typical school schedules.


5)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks-- Engineering has completed a survey and expects to present the Council with a concept report at the April work session. The proposed sidewalk design is expected to require modifications and/or removal of numerous existing encroachments in the public ROW such as retaining walls, sprinkler systems, pavement, landscaping, stairs, etc.


6)  West Glen Avenue/North Monroe Street Signal-- Concept design is proceeding in coordination with the West Glen Avenue sidewalk project.


7)  Ped-Actuated Crossing Signals (3 Locations)-- Engineering has requested the item in the 2021 Capital Budget which remains under consideration. Ms. Docktor suggested consideration be given for these signals along East Ridgewood Avenue at Oak and Walnut Streets. Mr. Rutishauser discussed the operational and safety concerns at such locations with multiple crosswalks.


8)  Smart Street NJ-- Ms. Remis (with the support of Ms. Brogan and Ms. Buchsbaum) has been in contact with a Smart Street NJ grant administrator/coordinator regarding Ridgewood's eligibility. The Village must formally apply for consideration. Councilmember Reynolds will discuss and coordinate with Mayor Knudsen.


NEW BUSINESS:


1)  Ridgewood was nominated as one of 16 semi-finalists in the Strong Towns program. The activities of the CSAC were included in the application. Ms. Bamberg reported the results of the balloting which ended on March 18th showing Ridgewood came in behind Oxford, MS and will not advance to the next round of the program.


2)  The ordinance to make Glenwood Road one-way eastbound is advancing to a public hearing in the near future.


3)  Mr. DiMarco noted the general public had no opportunity to participate to the evening's meeting as the Village website did not carry the agenda despite its availability for several days. Similarly, the agenda and minutes for the February 18th have not been posted on the website. Councilmember Reynolds said she would pursue the situation with a view to resolving the issue.


NEXT MEETING: April 15, 2021 at 7:30 PM (by ZOOM)

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20210218 - CSAC Minutes

ATTENDEES: (by ZOOM Meeting)


CSAC Members/Liaisons: Anastasia Bamberg, Sheila Brogan, Kelly Buchsbaum, Sgt. John Chuck, Charles S. DiMarco, Joyce Docktor (by phone), Robert Fuhrman, Jane Remis, Councilmember Lorraine Reynolds, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Barbara Sacks


Others:  None


OLD BUSINESS:


1)  Franklin Avenue Corridor-- Bergen County has made some suggestions to the Village regarding the plans. Minor ROW takings may be needed. 


2)  Pedestrian/Bike SRTS Grants-- NV5 work continues-- approximately 75% billed. Engineering to meet with NV5 soon.


3)  CBDAC-- Focus continues on support by Village of downtown businesses. Traffic volumes in CBD are reduced. Discussions are underway to have a once-a-month street closing(??) promotional event. Discussion of proposed bollards as a feature to protect sidewalk/ street dining areas included expressions of safety concerns and need for warrantee of crashworthiness from supplier to protect the Village and affected merchants. It was agreed that concrete footings for a bollard estimated at 30"X30"X30" would involve a significant construction project possibly including utilities.


4)  SSATF- No activity--little expected until a regular school schedule returns.


5)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks-- No progress to report. Higher priority issues being addressed.


6)  West Glen Avenue/ North Monroe Street Signal-- Design concept being developed.


7)  West Glen Avenue/ Hillcrest Road Ped-Actuated Crossing Signal-- Engineering has submitted a 2021 Capital Budget request for this location plus two additional intersections. Each installation has an estimated cost of approximately $14,000. 

 


NEW BUSINESS:


1)  Street Smart NJ-- Ms. Remis reviewed her discussions with Street Smart NJ and provided possible activities for Ridgewood including a presentation to CSAC regarding the program, a PSA to possibly be made available on the Village website and grant opportunities. Ms. Remis offered to write a grant after further research and it was noted that the Police Department and Engineering Division have been very helpful with providing support and background information on prior grant applications. Sgt. Chuck suggested determining the focus of the effort so as to narrowly define the grant/effort goal. Ms. Buchsbaum and Ms. Brogan offered to join Ms. Remis in this endeavor.


2)  Ms. Sacks discussed an incident along North Irving Street and Warren Place involving operation of remote control vehicles (RCV) by youngsters in the public roadway. The concerns included: RCV noise, horn-blowing by other vehicles, safety issues to vehicles and pedestrians, legality, etc.  Sgt. Chuck stated there were no legal issues if traffic was not impeded. The experience by the Police Department was the use of RCV typically occurred in parks or parking lots without much problem. He mentioned the recent snowfalls may have made the usual locations for RCV activities unavailable although no pattern of misuse of RCV on public streets had been observed to date. He agreed to monitor the situation and take any appropriate actions if a problem develops in the future.


3) Mr. Rutishauser reported NJDOT's plan to implement roadway changes at the Glenwood Road rail crossing including adopting a one-way eastbound flow which requires both Ridgewood and HoHoKus to enact appropriate ordinances. Included in the plan scheduled to commence construction in Spring, 2021 are sidewalk modifications, a movable gate at the top of the hill which can be closed during adverse weather conditions, drainage upgrades and pedestrian safety improvements. The NJDOT has reserved the right to close the crossing if unsafe driver behavior persists. The project is 100% NJDOT-funded.


4) Councilmember Reynolds said a resident expressed safety concerns regarding NJ Transit buses along East Ridgewood Avenue in the business district. Narrow travel lanes often result in buses driving over the median line and encroaching on the opposing traffic lane. The situation was acknowledged by all. Mr. Rutishauser and Sgt. Chuck reviewed an Engineering Division concept plan to build a bus station in the rail station parking lot to create a "transit hub" for the approximately 300 daily bus trips thereby allowing the re-routing of buses  along Franklin Avenue while eliminating the current bus station. It was suggested that the concept plan be re-visited.


5) Mr. DiMarco thanked Ms. Buchsbaum for scheduling the ZOOM meeting when the Village's ZOOM link did not become available in a timely manner for posting on the Ridgewood website.  He expressed disappointment the agenda and ZOOM link were not posted thereby limiting public information and the opportunity for participation. He agreed to make an effort to avoid a similar situation in the future.


NEXT MEETING: March 18, 2021 at 7:30 PM (by ZOOM)

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