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ABOUT TOWN: Route 138 Bottleneck Study Presented [POLL]

Welcome to "About Town with Mark Snyder," a column that will keep you up to the minute with what's what, who's who and what's going on around town. If you see or hear something we could use here, let us know by sending an e-mail to pmpco@aol.com.

OLD COLONY PLANNING COUNCIL PRESENTS RT. 138 BOTTLENECK STUDY: A sparse crowd turned up for a Bottleneck Study Workshop on the Rt. 138 corridor and downtown Wednesday night at .

The Old Colony Planning Council has and is conducting a study of Route 138, from Stoughton Square north to the Canton town line, to relieve traffic bottlenecks and to develop alternative solutions to enhance traffic flow and improve pedestrian and bicycle safety.

There was a presentation and discussion on concepts that the OCPC hopes will result in a vision for future development and improvements in the 138 corridor.

Among those who DID come were Selectmen John Stagnone, John Anzivino and Cynthia Walsh. Also there was former Selectman Lou Gitto, Ted Philips of Rep. Lou Kafka's office, Emily Dix of Senator Brian Joyce's office, DPW Superintendent John Batchelder. and Town Engineer Ben Feehan.

Business was represented by Rob Kushner, owner of ; Robert Branzcewski, who represented his girlfriend who owns Fairy Tales Formals; and Mark Snyder, Vice Chairman of the Stoughton Chamber of Commerce. Noticeable in their absence were any members of the Planning Board or the Town Planner.

Gitto suggested that Town Hall employees park in the municipal lot behind the police station, freeing up the parking lot behind Town Hall for customers of downtown stores. It was also suggested that employees of those stores park on Railroad Ave. in another lot owned by the town, freeing up spaces in front of the stores for their customers.

Much discussion was made on traffic congestion and safety.

The Old Colony Planning Council's Bottleneck Analysis study labeled the intersections of Stoughton Square (south end), Washington and School Streets, Washington and Lincoln Streets, Washington and Central Streets, and Washington and York Streets as "Safety Concerns," with crash rates above average.

Jed Cornock, an OCPC Transportation Planner, said that Washington & Central Street intersection was "one of the busiest intersections in our region, and had one of the highest crash rates in the area."

Others labeled as "congestion concerns" for having backed up traffic, were the intersections of Stoughton Square (south end), Washington and School Streets, Washington and Lincoln Streets, and Washington and York Streets.

As for whether a traffic light should be added to the intersection of Washington and York Streets, they recommended no light be added, due to the congestion that already exists.  However, there are legal issues that are beyond their recommendation, which is in the hands of the State and the town's attorneys.

Branczewski thought the entire OCPC endeavor might be a waste of time. He said, "Perception is reality. You can spend millions and it will be obsolete by the time it's completed."    

The Old Colony Planning Council said that they would take the information gathered Wednesday night and plan a followup meeting at Town Hall. 

They also took the suggestion of Lou Gitto to try to record the proceedings for playback on local cable.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Stoughton Veteran's Agent , who has provided so much financial help to veterans and their widows.  He knows how to navigate the waters of federal and state aide. 

And, to Domenic J. Cotoia, the former Program Director at Comcast Cable in Easton, who helped produce the Snyder's Stoughton TV Show for most of its seven years.  To Renee Mason-Grady of Stoughton; to Michael Silva of Stoughton; and to Eric MacKenzie of Stoughton.

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Concerned Stoughton Resident January 26, 2012 at 06:10 PM
If you are trying to get out onto 138 from York Street at rush hour you can sit there sometimes for 15 minutes. No one will let you go..It is a nightmare and very very dangerous
DJ January 26, 2012 at 06:37 PM
I agree. In addition to more traffic and York/Pine becoming a cut through, the intersection got worse because when they altered the plan and put the sidewalk on the north side of York St instead of the south side where it was originally intended, they also narrowed the road and removed room for traffic to form two lanes out onto Route 138. Now, if someone is stuck and can't make a left turn due to heavy traffic or meek driving habits, everyone else is stuck behind them. Before the sidewalk, you could get by and take a right onto 138 without much issue. A traffic light will do little good. I would like to see them adjust the existing lights at S&S and C to try to accommodate greater space rations for York St.

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