Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIII, No. 6
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
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Weather Forecast

Township Supplements Rutgers Agreement; Approves Stony Brook Bridge Improvement

Ellen Gilbert

Princeton Township Committee approved a supplement to its 2007 agreement with Rutgers University’s New Jersey Sustainable State Institute (NJSSI) for the creation of a Strategic Sustainable Community Master Plan for the Princeton community. The $15,000 supplement is in addition to the original $20,000 appropriated for the project. Those funds, and the additional $15,000, are being made available through a grant from the Municipal Land Use Center at The College of New Jersey.

The request for additional money came from the Environmental Commission and the Regional Planning Board of Princeton. In a memorandum to the Committee, Township Attorney Edwin Schmierer said that the “plan has been more involved than originally projected,” and that NJSSI “has suggested that additional services be provided, including public outreach, the creation of a website for the plan, and guidance for the implementation.”

A bond ordinance appropriating $300,000 for road improvement projects was introduced at Monday’s meeting, and will receive a public hearing on February 23. Township Administrator James Pascale noted that, given the current economic climate, the immediate focus is on small, urgently-needed repairs, and projects that do not involve taxpayer dollars. He also cited the importance of identifying “shovel-ready” projects that could take advantage of Federal economic stimulus package money if and when it becomes available.

The Committee also approved the introduction of an ordinance authorizing the appropriation of $789,692 for improvement of the Stony Brook pedestrian bridge and pathway. Township Engineer Bob Kiser noted that the project, which will probably go out for bids in “about a month or two,” dates back to 2002, and that its progress owes much to the work of Friends of Princeton Open Space. This ordinance will also receive a public hearing on February 23.

Salty Winter

Mr. Kiser reported that, with an average of a snowstorm a week, the Township had used double (2,200 tons) the amount of salt it usually uses during the winter, amounting to a cost of approximately $140,000. Mr. Pascale reminded residents of the Township’s 48-hour snow removal requirement. For those who are unable to clear their properties themselves, a list of landscapers available to do snow removal is available on the Township’s website or in a hand-out at the Clerk’s office,

Mayor Bernie Miller reported on a “spirited” meeting with representatives of the Mercer County Engineering Department and residents who live west of the Rosedale Road bridge, which is due to be replaced this spring. The discussion concerned the effects of the bridge closing, rerouting traffic, and public safety issues. Mr. Miller reported that there was a consensus for the county to proceed with the removal of the old bridge and construction of a new one, and that the county will try to obtain a waiver that will enable the work to run from March 15 through July 15, in an effort bring the project forward a week or two. The Township will host another informational meeting in late April or early May.

February was identified as Black History Month by both the Township and the Borough in a joint official proclamation read at Monday’s meeting by Mr. Miller. The document acknowledged the “honor and stature” that arises from a “diversity of traditions,” and recognized the roles and achievements of African Americans in the community.

Princeton Township offices will be closed on Monday, February 16, in observance of Presidents’ Day. The next Township Committee meeting will be on Monday, February 23, at 7 p.m., in Township Hall.

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