Fed­eral Road safety plan to cost $6M

The News-Times - - NEWS | FROM THE FRONT PAGE - By Jim Shay and Ju­lia Perkins

BROOK­FIELD — A $6 mil­lion plan to im­prove busy Fed­eral Road is back on track.

The state Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion will con­duct a pub­lic in­for­ma­tion meeting on pro­posed safety im­prove­ments along Route 202 in Brook­field later this month.

The work was among the $4.3 bil­lion worth of trans­porta­tion projects the state had post­poned at the start of this year un­til fund­ing could be iden­ti­fied.

The project is de­signed to im­prove safety and re­duce the bot­tle­necks on the road, where sev­eral big stores are lo­cated.

“We’re get­ting traf­fic jams ev­ery Satur­day and Sun­day along the lower cor­ri­dor of Fed­eral Road,” First Select­man Steve Dunn said. “That's pri­mar­ily due to the fact that the road has not been up­graded to ad­dress the ad­di­tion of big box stores — the Kohl’s, the Cost­cos, the BJs. The road is over­loaded right now as con­structed.”

The state has cited the area as a prob­lem spot for crashes.

A 2015 West­ern Con­necti­cut Coun­cil of Gov­ern­ments study found 442 crashes be­tween 2010 and 2012 on the

1.6-mile lower Fed­eral Road cor­ri­dor from White Turkey Road to Route 133. The WestCOG study found about

30,000 cars drive on por­tions of lower Fed­eral Road each day.

There are no side­walks and only one cross­walk in that Fed­eral Road cor­ri­dor, ac­cord­ing to the WestCOG study.

The DOT project will in­clude the con­struc­tion of five-foot side­walks to ac­com­mo­date pedes­trian traf­fic along the cor­ri­dor, in ad­di­tion to widen­ing the road for four-foot shoul­ders to im­prove safety for bi­cy­clists.

The project ex­tends from the drive­ways of BJ’s and Kohl’s to the in­ter­sec­tion of Fed­eral Road and Junc­tion Road. The plan is to pay for con­struc­tion with 80 per­cent fed­eral funds and 20 per­cent state funds.

The state be­gan work­ing on the project af­ter Dunn asked the DOT com­mis­sioner to in­stall a left-turn sig­nal on the north­bound side at Chick-Fil-A. But Dunn said the com­mis­sioner told him the state would not do that alone.

In­stead, traf­fic sig­nals will be in­stalled at the south­ern in­ter­sec­tion of Fed­eral Road and Old New Mil­ford Road, as well as the in­ter­sec­tion of Bev­erly Drive and Hard­scrab­ble Road.

Dunn said it is next to im­pos­si­ble to turn left off of Bev­erly Drive on the week­ends.

Two traf­fic sig­nals at the north­ern in­ter­sec­tion of Fed­eral Road and Old New Mil­ford Road will also be re­moved.

A ded­i­cated left-turn lane will also be added to the south­bound side at the Chick-fil-A and Shop Rite plaza.

“It’s go­ing to make the traf­fic flow much more smoothly,” Dunn said. “That’s what we want.”

De­sign is ex­pected to be com­pleted in Jan­uary 2021, with con­struc­tion anticipated to be­gin in sum­mer 2021.

The pub­lic in­for­ma­tion meeting is set for 7 p.m. on Oct. 29 at Town Hall.

Carol Kaliff / Hearst Con­necti­cut Me­dia

The state plans to im­prove Fed­eral Road in Brook­field, a project that will in­clude a left-turn sig­nal at the north en­trance to the Chick-fil-A plaza.

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