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In its role as the local traffic authority, the Police Commission on November 7 reviewed several traffic issues that affect the local quality of life.
Pete Sepe of 83 Toddy Hill Road thanked commission members for the placement of an electronic speed indicator along a section of that road where motorists often speed. The speed indicator is effective, resulting in decreased travel speeds, Mr Sepe said.
For the past several months, Toddy Hill Road area residents have urged police to strictly enforce the speed limit along that street, where motorists travel between Berkshire Road (Route 34) and South Main Street (Route 25).
Police Chief James Viadero pointed out, however, that when the weather soon turns bad and winter conditions arrive, the speed indicator will be removed to prevent it from being damaged. Police are working on acquiring a permanent flashing speed sign for Toddy Hill Road as a component of their speed enforcement there, he said.
The police chief added that police are continuing their speed enforcement project along Toddy Hill Road by having officers monitor traffic flow.
Patrick Ross of 75 Toddy Hill Road said police enforcement of the speed limit there is having positive results.
In another traffic matter, Mike Mandarano of 9 Birch Rise Drive told Police Commission members that construction of a new bridge on Sugar Street, near its intersection with Elm Drive, has resulted in traffic congestion in that area, posing dangerous traffic conditions on Birch Rise Drive caused by motorists using that side street to avoid the construction zone.
“It’s dangerous,” he said.
Police have been monitoring traffic conditions in that area, Chief Viadero said. When the construction schedule for the bridge project is known, police will be able to better address the traffic issue, the police chief said.
Police Commission member Dan Rosenthal urged that police seek to improve traffic conditions on Birch Rise Drive and the nearby Juniper Road. Chief Viadero said he would confer with Sergeant Jeff Silver, who heads the police traffic unit, on improving traffic conditions there.
In another traffic matter, Police Commission Chairman Joel Faxon said he is seeking to have the state reduce from 45 mph to 40 mph the speed limit on sections of Route 25 in town that now have a 45 mph limit, as a safety measure. Such a speed limit change might result in Global Positioning System (GPS) automotive navigation units recommend that eastbound motorists on Interstate 84, who are seeking to reach points south via Newtown, get off I-84 at Exit 11 instead of at Exit 9, with the beneficial effect of reducing traffic flow on Main Street in the town center, he said.
In another matter, Chief Viadero presented Police Commission member Virgil Procaccini, Jr, with an award for his participation on the panel. Mr Procaccini served as a commission member during two separate stints. He did not run for a commission seat in the November 7 municipal elections.
The chief thanked Mr Procaccini for his town service, adding, “We do appreciate it.”
Mr Faxon thanked Mr Procaccini for serving on the panel, terming him a very knowledgeable and resourceful member.