Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXII, No. 15
 
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
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Township Eyes $37.4K in Sidewalks, Urged to Restore Southbound Bus Pickups

Matthew Hersh

Township Hall introduced a handful of ordinances Monday night, continuing a long-stated municipal goal of creating a comprehensive pedestrian circuit along more heavily used thoroughfares.

Three sidewalk projects, totaling $37,400 in bond ordinances that will appropriate finances to fund the projects, were approved unanimously Monday following public hearings.

The first project, a $13,500 expense, will go to install four-foot-wide concrete sidewalks along portions of Braeburn Drive and Meadowbrook Drive with 50 percent of the cost levied on the affected property owners.

A $3,800 concrete sidewalk will be built along a portion of Battle Road, also with a 50 percent assessment on impacted property owners.

Finally, a $20,100 bond ordinance was approved to replace sidewalks along a portion of Franklin Avenue. A 50 percent assessment is also in store for residents living in the impacted areas.

Township Committee also introduced a bond ordinance that will appropriate $14,600 for the replacement of sidewalks on Ober Road. A public hearing for that ordinance will be held at Township Committee’s May 5 session.

In the Ober Road project, residents living in the impacted area will experience a 50 percent project levy. In all of the sidewalk projects, residents will have 10 years to pay down their assessment costs.

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In other news, Wendy Mager of the Friends of Princeton Open Space handed Township Committee a check for $225,000 for reimbursement of funds from the closing the Tusculum estate, 35 acres of which were acquired by the Township for permanent open space.

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Josh Leinsdorf, a Borough resident who has spent much of his incumbency on the Princeton Regional Board of Education advocating for increased pedestrian access and busing, urged Township Committee Monday night to nix the drop-off only bus stops heading south, into downtown Princeton. Suburban Transit runs its Coach USA line to and from the Port Authority in New York City from downtown Princeton.

Currently, riders can only flag down the bus as it heads north, but Mr. Leinsdorf said riders should be able to take the bus from points further north along Route 27 as an inexpensive means of getting into downtown Princeton.

“Pedestrians and public transit users are treated like second-class citizens,” Mr. Leinsdorf said, asking Township Hall to draft a resolution that would allow for the placement of bus stops on Route 27, which is a state road.

Township Engineer Robert Kiser said there “needs to be more communication” between New Jersey Transit, Coach USA, and the Princetons, as well as getting Princeton University involved in the discussion.

Committeeman Chad Goerner suggested putting a small group together first to “focus on this individual effort.”

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