CSAC Meeting Minutes 200180621


CSAC Members/Liaisons: Anastasia Bamberg, Sgt. Jay Chuck, Charles S. Di Marco, Joyce Docktor, Christopher J. Rutishauser, PE, Jane Shinozuka, Councilwoman Bernadette Walsh

Others: Sarah Cahill, Jeanne Johnson, Alyson Llerandi, Jane Remis, Bethany Rose, Matthew Schirripa, Jiffy Vermylen



1)  Franklin Avenue On-Street Parking/ Traffic Calming-- Surveyor continuing to map Franklin Avenue Corridor intersections and develop data base for design documents.

2)  Crosswalk at Van Emburgh Avenue/ Hampshire Road-- ADA ramp construction scheduled for this summer.

3)  Pedestrian/ Bike Safety SRTS Grants-- No feedback from Bergen County as yet.

4)  CBDAC-- Interest in stepped-up enforcement of pedestrian safety laws.

5)  CSAC By-Laws-- Councilwoman Walsh to e-mail draft By-Laws to members for final comments. 

6)  Proposed Parking at RR Station/ Pedestrian Walkway-- Mr. Rutishauser described three alternates with 33-36 spaces. SHPO has not responded in three weeks.

7)  Kenilworth Road/ Spring Avenue--Letters sent to adjacent property owners regarding requirement to clear sight triangle obstructions. Far-side STOP signs added. Additional pavement markings (including STOP logo) being considered.

8)  Living to 100-- The May 21st conference included many relevant points to foster safe and healthy environments for an aging population, including, but not limited to, safe walking communities, exercise, age-friendly features (trip-free sidewalks, sitting areas , ADA-compliant ramps). CSAC Members/ Liaisons attending included Ms. Sacks, Ms. Brogan, Mr. Fuhrman and Mr. Di Marco.

9)  Long Term Programs/ Policy Discussions (On-Going)

  1. a)  West Glen Avenue Sidewalks-- Anticipated for construction of select areas in Fall, 2018.
  2. b)  Senior Walkability Workshop/ Sidewalk Condition Audit-- Letters sent to responsible property owners- repair work expected to begin soon.
  3. c)  Signal Division instructed to follow all MUTCD requirements.


1)  North Walnut Street Speed Issues-- Several residents discussed concerns regarding drivers exceeding the speed limit on North Walnut Street, failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks at Linwood Avenue and Franklin Avenue and related unsafe behaviors such as driving in the center of the road and failing to keep right. Sgt. Chuck reviewed prior speed analyses showing average speeds of approximately 30-33 mph. The Police will conduct a new speed/volume study and also review crash histories. A recommendation to install a double yellow centerline was considered in the past but deemed unacceptable by residents.  The experience on other Ridgewood streets where this traffic calming technique has been implemented was reviewed and  confirmed a lowering of the average speed and a near-elimination of the higher speeds (40mph and above).

Sgt. Chuck also explained the availability of the process for issuing a summons by a resident through the Violation Bureau. In general, a resident may record and/or photograph a violation with license plate number, a description of the driver, time of the incident and be willing to testify in court, if necessary. This option is available for reporting failing to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk provided the pedestrian has entered the crosswalk and the approaching vehicle is sufficiently far from the intersection so as to be able to stop ( approximately 110 feet at 25 mph).

The Police study of North Walnut Street will be made available to CSAC when completed.

2)  Garber Square Bike Lane Eradication-- CSAC reviewed the Police Traffic Report, Concept Plan and Village Council Resolution. The Police crash data showed a total of 30 reported incidents in the 34 months BEFORE ( January, 2012 through October 24, 2014) the Garber Square Improvement was implemented and 32 reported incidents in the 30 months AFTER (November 2014 through May, 2017) the implementation. The Police Report notes seven crashes involving left-turning West Ridgewood Avenue vehicles failing to yield the right-of-way to vehicles exiting Station Plaza and two sideswipes in marked travel lanes of Garber Square in the BEFORE period  (NOTE: the two, narrow marked lanes at Garber Square were eliminated with the Improvement) compared to two crashes of the same type in the AFTER period. Also, three of the four sideswipe crashes in the AFTER period involved vehicles improperly using the Bike Lane as a travel lane.

All rear end crashes were caused by driver inattention. None of the reported injuries in both the BEFORE and AFTER periods required transportation to a hospital.

Mr. Rutishauser explained that the proposed eradication of  a portion of the Bike Lane has not been authorized by NJDOT which approved the original design as implemented and approved the grant to fund a part of the improvement. CSAC raised  concerns about the Village's liability for altering the prior plan without an engineer's signed and sealed certification of the design change and approval by NJDOT and the potential risk of refunding the grant if NJDOT declined to approve the change.

CSAC also expressed serious concerns about the impacts of the eradication in view of the Village's Complete Streets Policy which is intended to foster safe and efficient use of the roadway system for all vehicles, pedestrians and bicycles.

CSAC viewed the Police crash analysis as displaying no particular negative safety impact and provided a unanimous consensus supporting the Garber Square Bike Lane to remain "as-is" with an emphasis on an increased Police effort to better enforce violations by drivers of the pavement markings clearly designating the separation of motor vehicles from bikers.

Ms. Llerandi discussed her experiences with motor vehicles as a biker (including being struck by a left-turning vehicle along Franklin Avenue) and support for the Bike Lane and continuing efforts to enhance a safe roadway environment for all users, including bikes.

3)  CSAC Input to Village Master Plan Review--CSAC asked to be informed of progress in the Master Plan Review process.

4)  Pedestrian Safety Awareness Program-- CSAC wishes to help with a continuing awareness program. Detains need to be developed.

5)  Starbucks Drive-thru Pedestrian/ Vehicle Issues. Police asked to give more attention to exiting/entering/pedestrian conflicts.

6)  ALL-Pedestrian Signal Phases-- based on prior discussions and experience in other communities, CSAC consensus was that these traffic signal phases were not applicable to the pedestrian/vehicle patterns in Ridgewood.

7)  CSAC July 19th and August 16th Meetings--The July 19, 2018 meeting is cancelled. The August 16th meeting will be held as scheduled.

8) Other-- Ms.Johnson asked for volunteers among the CSAC and other groups to lead the Crosswalk Rally planned for the Fall. Details to follow.

NEXT MEETING: Thursday, August 16, 2018 at 7:30 PM in the Garden Room at Village Hall.


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