DELMAR — On April 6, the Kenwood Avenue Traffic Calming Study held its first public workshop at the Bethlehem Middle School Library to discuss the Kenwood Avenue corridor between Delaware Avenue (NYS Route 443) and the Delmar Bypass (NYS Route 32). The Town of Bethlehem is performing this traffic study to evaluate potential traffic calming and pedestrian safety measures.
Avenue (NYS Route 443) and the Delmar Bypass (NYS Route 32). The Town of Bethlehem is performing this traffic study to evaluate potential traffic calming and pedestrian safety measures.
“After listening to the concerns and looking at it with our police department, our planning department, and our engineering department, we decided that this was a street that needed an extra hard look,” said Town Supervisor David VanLuven.
After bringing in an engineering firm, CHA Consulting, to characterize the challenges along the street, they identified potential changes that could be made to make the roadways safer for all users. CHA Consulting will deliver potential solutions as well as graphic concept designs in the next workshop.
“The goal is to address the pedestrian issues along Kenwood Avenue, as well as the nature of driving habits along Kenwood Avenue,” said the town’s Director of Planning Robert Leslie.
Leslie said the workshop was met with a positive reaction. An estimated 70 people gathered to listen to the presentation before splitting into groups to analyze the maps of Kenwood Avenue and proposed ideas.
“I found the tone of the meeting to be constructive and collaborative,” said VanLuven. “It was a classic moment where everyone was working to make our great community even better.”
The Kenwood Avenue Traffic Calming Study’s purpose is to evaluate the safety issues, analyze what appropriate measures can be taken to address the issues, and then develop traffic calming and pedestrian safety recommendations. A long-term goal is to create project opportunities with solutions.
The Project Development Team includes David VanLuven, Robert Leslie, Deputy Commissioner of Public Works Paul Penman, Town Engineer Eric Johnson, and Senior Planner Nate Owens.
The team is encouraging public participation throughout the process. That participation is an essential component of the project’s plans at all levels of development, design and construction. Ongoing efforts to engage the public will help provide a clear view of existing situations and challenges, as well as ensure that the study meets its aims and objectives.
From now through April 30, an interactive map at www.townofbethlehem.org encourages individuals to highlight safety issues, experiences and concerns about Kenwood Avenue. The feedback will be used to better understand the problems and develop solutions.
“We want to get as much local input as we can,” said VanLuven.
A second workshop is planned for August or September. At the second public workshop, there will be discussions with the community about the proposed solutions.
“This study project is part of a broader initiative we have to try to make our streets safer for everyone,” added VanLuven.
Information about the Kenwood Avenue Traffic Calming Study can be found at www.kenwoodavestudy.com, www.bethlehemsafestreets.com, and www.townofbethlehem.org.