Whit­pain board ap­proves or­di­nance to add stop signs

The Ambler Gazette - - LETTERS - By Thomas Celona

Driv­ers will be com­ing to a stop at 19 more lo­ca­tions throughout :KLWSDLQ, EuW WUDI­fiF FRQWURO PHD­sures at one dan­ger­ous in­ter­sec­tion have been halted for fur­ther study.

The Whit­pain Board of Su­per­vi­sors adopted an or­di­nance that will in­stall a to­tal of 19 stop signs at its Oct. 16 meet­ing.

The or­di­nance, which was the sub­ject of a pub­lic hear­ing at the board’s Oct. 2 meet­ing, will in­stall stop signs and other safety mea­sures at two in­ter­sec­tions, add stop signs at in­ter­sec­tions within res­i­den­tial developments and cre­ate a no park­ing zone along Town­ship Line Road (south) be­tween Cas­sel Drive and Tal­bot Road.

The two main in­ter­sec­tions im­pacted by the or­di­nance are that of Yost and Cortez roads on the western edge of the town­ship and Oak Street and Rail­road Av­enue in West Ambler.

Cur­rently, there are no stop signs on Yost where it meets Cortez as the road makes backto-back turns. Town­ship staff said the sight dis­tance for driv­ers mak­ing a turn from Cortez onto Yost was more than 100 feet less than what it should be at some an­gles, caus­ing a safety con­cern.

With the or­di­nance ap­proved, stop signs will be in­stalled on both sides of Yost, cre­at­ing a three-way stop. Ad­di­tion­ally, the town­ship will in­stall in­creased VLJQDJH, OLQH PDUNLQJV, D flDVKLQJ warn­ing de­vice and other signs along Yost to warn driv­ers of the up­com­ing stop signs.

While the pro­posed signs re­ceived no op­po­si­tion in the Oct. 2 pub­lic hear­ing, Bob McDougall, who lives near the in­ter­sec­tion, said he felt the board was cre­at­ing a haz­ardous sit­u­a­tion where driv­ers stopped on Yost are likely to be rear ended.

“You’re putting us at risk ev­ery time we stop at that stop sign,” he said.

Joan Shal, of Cortez Road, coun­tered, say­ing she “to­tally sup­ported” the or­di­nance be­cause “we need the stop signs.”

Mean­while, the change in West Ambler will cre­ate a three-way stop at Oak and Rail­road.

This in­ter­sec­tion has long been a safety con­cern for res­i­dents, HVSHFLDOOy JLYHQ WKH WUuFN WUDI­fiF due to the BoRit As­bestos site, ac­cord­ing to town­ship staff.

The board unan­i­mously ap­proved the or­di­nance.

The or­di­nance, how­ever, had been re­vised from its orig­i­nal ver­sion to elim­i­nate pro­posed stop signs at one ac­ci­dent-prone in­ter­sec­tion — some­thing that prompted ques­tions from sev­eral res­i­dents.

Orig­i­nally, the or­di­nance had pro­posed in­stalling two stop signs along Wentz Road where it meets Cherry Lane and Plow­share Road to cre­ate a four-way stop. There have been 14 re­portable ac­ci­dents LQ WKH SDVW fiYH yHDUV DW WKH LQWHU­sec­tion, which prompted the deVLUH IRU VWRS VLJQV, RI­fiFLDOV VDLG DW the pre­vi­ous meet­ing.

nues­tions from res­i­dents and board mem­bers, how­ever, caused the town­ship to re­move the in­ter­sec­tion from the or­di­nance, ac­cord­ing to town­ship So­lic­i­tor Jim Garrity. Town­ship staff will study op­tions for the in­ter­sec­tion fur­ther and present a pro­posed amend­ment to the or­di­nance at a later date.

“We did hear con­cerns from peo­ple in the au­di­ence and the board of su­per­vi­sors that just needed to be stud­ied fur­ther,” Town­ship Man­ager Ro­man Pron­czak said.

Pron­czak said that in­ves­ti­gaWLRQ wLOO ORRN DW wKHWKHU D WUDI­fiF sig­nal would be bet­ter than stop signs, whether the signs would po­ten­tially pro­duce de­lays, whether ad­vanced warn­ing signs would be needed and other fac­tors.

“We don’t want to solve one prob­lem and cre­ate an­other,” he said. “The staff has a lit­tle bit more home­work to do.”

Sev­eral res­i­dents ex­pressed con­cern some­thing wasn’t be­ing done about the in­ter­sec­tion at this time, say­ing they feared an­other ac­ci­dent could oc­cur.

“We cer­tainly have not aban­doned a so­lu­tion for this in­ter­sec­tion,” board Chair­man Joseph Palmer said. “We’re just as con­cerned as you.”

7UDI­fiF HQJLQHHULQJ fiUP 0FMa­hon As­so­ci­ates has al­ready be­gun to look fur­ther at the in­ter­sec­tion, and the staff ex­pects to present a so­lu­tion for the in­ter­sec­tion to the board at ei­ther its Nov. 20 or Dec. 4 meet­ing, ac­cord­ing to Pron­czak.

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