Dudley Avenue set to reopen to through traffic
QUEENSTOWN — The barricades that closed Dudley Avenue to through traffic will be removed on Friday, Nov. 4, after the town sent out a questionnaire to all residents asking the best way to proceed.
Removing the barricades essentially reopens the street to through traffic, but it might be temporary. Results of the questionnaire will be tabulated and discussed at the next commission meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 9. The commissioners at that point may decide on further action on Dudley.
Earlier the commissioners passed a resolution calling for the barricades for 30-day trial period, which started Oct. 4 and will end on Nov. 4. The barricades on Dudley at Del Rhodes Avenue, had cut off motorists using Dudley as a through street.
The commissioners decided on the barricades in reaction to some residents complaining about motorists speeding on Dudley and using it as a through street. It was Lonnie Anthony who lives on Dudley who originally complained about the problem. Also, a dog was hit and killed while being walked by its owner on Dudley.
A crowd of people came to the commissioners meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 26, loudly voicing their objections to barricading Dudley
Two of the most vocal opponents of the closure were two sisters who take care of their 87-year-old mother who lives on Dudley at Del Rhodes and is upset by the action.
Robin Laird of Centreville said people don’t speed on Dudley with the speed bumps and it’s not true that 300 cars a day drive on Dudley, which was an estimate from a town commissioner.
She also said the change was made on the street because only two people wanted it. “That’s completely unfair,” she said.
Her sister, Wendy Hampton, said she now has to drive the school bus through the town, which she considers dangerous since it’s lunchtime and people are coming from the fire company and post office and going to the restaurant. And there’s construction there, too, she added.
Hampton also complained about all the signs in that area. “I’d run over someone reading all those signs,” she said. She also commented about the appearance of the blockade. “It’s s***ville,” she said in the open part of the meeting.
There are large speed bumps on Dudley to slow down motorists. Hampton said the cars would be damaged if they speed across the speed bumps.
The town also put up a partial blockade on Dudley where it intersects with Route 18, which means only one car at a time can go into Dudley Avenue. That can cause a head-on collision from cars going out of Dudley and cars coming in, said Ed Benton Jr. of Centreville, who is Hampton’s boyfriend and also attended the meeting.
When the meeting was over, Commissioner George Plumbo said the partial blockade was necessary at Dudley at Route 18 to let people know that Dudley is now one-way, and he’s heard feedback from people.
“I’ve gotten a lot of feedback that’s positive from people walking through town,” he said.
During the meeting, town attorney Brynja McDivitt Booth addressed the crowd who attended.
“The temporary solution to see the result or feedback was a good thing,” she said.
The questionnaire sent out to all town residents will ask if Dudley should be closed to through traffic permanently, or make it one-way, leave Dudley as it was, or they can suggest another option.
The wording of the questionnaire reads, the “town commissioners are heavily considering reopening Dudley Avenue and making it one-way with the entrance being from Rt. 18 (Main Street).”
Originally, the questionnaire was suppose to be sent to just Dudley Avenue residents, but the wording was changed to address all Queenstown residents, Plumbo said.
The town asked the residents to return the questionnaire by Nov. 4, the day the barricades come down.
Queenstown Commissioners at their Wednesday, Oct. 26, meeting heard objections from the public about putting up barricades on Dudley Avenue. From left to right, Commissioners George Plumbo, Tom Willis Jr., and Mike Bowell. Willis is also president of the town commissioners.
Many residents showed up at the Queenstown Commissioners’ meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 26, and voiced their objection to the barricades put up on Dudley Avenue to cut off motorists from using the road as a through street.