October 13, 2022
Signatures: 11Next Goal: 25
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Why this petition matters

Started by Frank Derby

The dangers posed to pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, residents and visitors alike, both through the Village as well as at the intersection of Routes 601 and 518, are apparent to all.  The current speed limit through Blawenburg of 40 mph turns this historic area into a speedway corridor, a place to zip through instead of slowing for life in this small village where people work, worship, go to school, and visit neighbors and local businesses.   This situation makes living and visiting here dangerous, as witnessed by the following:


1.              The increased number of motor vehicle accidents at the intersection;

2.              The near-misses of pedestrians, cyclists and motorists traveling through Blawenburg;

3.              The daily safety of residents of Blawenburg Village while turning into or out of their driveways, walking the sidewalks, and/or crossing Route 518 to access the Blawenburg Post Office where many receive their mail and packages at post office boxes, etc.;

4.              The safety of customers visiting and shopping at the Blawenburg businesses, including those crossing Routes 601 and 518 to access the Blawenburg Bistro, the Veterinary Hospital, New World Pizza, and other establishments;

5.              The weekday safety of children, parents, and teachers at the Blawenburg Village School, which has grown to 70+ students.  (Several families in Blawenburg walk their children to school and must cross 518, and multiple accidents have occurred at the school’s crosswalk in the last 5 years);

6.              The safety of parishioners at the Blawenburg Reformed Church; as well as

7.              The vibration damage being caused to buildings in the Blawenburg National Historical District, along with the general increase in noise pollution specifically linked to the use of jake brakes by dump trucks travelling to and from the Silvi (Gibraltar) quarry at 484 Route 601. 


We, the undersigned, therefore call upon the elected officials of both Somerset County and Montgomery Township to take some or all of the following steps to improve safety there:


1.     Reduction of the speed limit to 25 mph for a quarter mile in all directions, that is, through Blawenburg along Route 518 from approximately Van Zandt Road (west) to Mountain View Road (east), and along Route 601 from Country Club Drive (south) to the Rock Brook-Sylvan Lake bridge and possibly to the Montgomery High school pedestrian crossings (north);


2.     The abolition of right turn on red from southbound 601 onto westbound 518 because of the propensity for accidents involving that half of the intersection and the obstructed eastward view of those turning cars due to the former Step In Stone building;


3.     The addition of appropriate signage warning of the presence of children;


4.     Improvements to pedestrian safety with, among other things, the repair of the intersection’s sidewalks, the installation of a cross-walk across the southern approach to the intersection, and the installation of a sidewalk running from the intersection to Country Club Drive along the west side of 601, to allow school-age children to walk between the Cherry Valley development, the businesses at the intersection and Montgomery High School; and making all the crosswalks the cross 518 more visible with prominent signage or lights to alert drivers that it is the law to stop for pedestrians.


5.     An absolute ban on jake braking to reduce noise pollution within the same physical area.

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Signatures: 11Next Goal: 25
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