Shortcut causes long term problems

LOWER MAKEFIELD TWP., Pa. - November 12, 2008 It's supposed to be a quiet neighborhood street in Lower Makefiled Township. In fact, much of it is devoid of sidewalks, but West Ferry Road has, instead, turned into a veritable thru-way.

"They experience somewhere in the area of 6,000 cars over a three-day period going through there, mostly in the rush hour in the morning and rush hour in the evening," Chief Ken Coluzzi of Lower Makefield Police said.

The problem is that during rush hour, Trenton Avenue gets backed up with commuters heading toward the Calhoun Street Bridge going into New Jersey.

But anyone with a map or a GPS can see Ferry Street runs parallel to Trenton Avenue and it has now become a very popular short-cut to the bridge.

The situation has turned into a nightmare on a road with several school bus stops and lots of commuters.

"People are running through stop signs, they're driving way too fast, and it's becoming a danger for ourselves and our children," Shelly Joseph said.

That's why Shelly is one of many neighbors here calling on the township to actually barricade West Ferry Road and shut it down completely to thru-traffic.

But other people in this community fear that would only dump this problem on some other nearby neighborhood.

"I think the traffic on the other roads would just be a nightmare, and some of that traffic is just out of control, so, I mean, for the township it would be irresponsible to say we're going to shut down this road and not cause another traffic problem," Walter Olivant said.

So, what to do?

The township supervisors have already said they are willing to entertain the possibility of using the barricades, but few people are looking at that as a realistic long term solution.

There is little doubt this will be a hot topic at the next supervisors' meeting scheduled for next Wednesday evening.

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