February 23, 2022

County Taking Steps To Improve Safety At Rosedale Crossing

By Anne Levin

At Princeton Council’s virtual meeting on February 14, some members of the public voiced their frustrations about a lack of action to improve safety at a pedestrian crossing on Rosedale Road. It was at this crossing, between the access driveways to Greenway Meadows and Johnson Park School, that 82-year-old Pinghua Xu was fatally struck by a vehicle last August.

Aware that the roadway is under the aegis of Mercer County, as opposed to the municipality, the residents implored Council to implement traffic calming, and use influence at the county level to speed improvements. Deanna Stockton, Princeton’s deputy administrator for engineering, responded that the town has been in touch with the county, and was hoping to have some information about safety improvements in the near future.

Worry about this crossing is nothing new. In 1999, then-Princeton Township Mayor Phyllis Marchand met with Johnson Park’s principal and officers of its Parent Teacher Organization to talk about the dangers of the intersection. Nearly six years ago, it was flagged as an area of concern in the New Jersey Safe Routes to School report.

Asked this week whether any progress has been made, Stockton referred the question to Mercer County Director of Communications Julie Willmot. Willmot said in an email that representatives of the county watched the meeting, and want to assure residents that County Executive Brian Hughes’ engineering office has been working on a solution for Rosedale Road since last year, along with design consultant Traffic Planning and Design (TPD).

The consultant submitted to the county a design solution of roundabouts at the intersection with Elm Road, General Johnson Drive, Province Line Road, and Carter Road, and a changed speed limit through the corridor. This proposal was forwarded to the municipality on
January 26.

“On February 14, Princeton informed the county that it supported the roundabout at General Johnson but sought more design information about the proposal at Elm Road,” Willmot wrote in an email. “The municipality was also supportive of reducing the speed limit to 35 miles per hour, which was recommended

by our consultant.”

In the meantime, Willmot said, the county has installed new striping on Rosedale Road to reflect 11-foot lane widths. Previously, the lanes varied from 11 feet to 13 feet in places. In response to Princeton’s request for more information at Rosedale and Elm roads, the county installed a traffic counter on Rosedale Road.

“This will be followed by a count on Elm Road this week,” Willmot said. “We have also asked the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission to provide us with the count for the turning movement at Rosedale Road and Elm Road. All this information will be provided to TPD to perform an analysis at the intersection of Rosedale Road and Elm Road to provide us with a recommendation to either move forward with a roundabout or a new signal. Mercer County will continue to do all we can to mitigate the concerns of Princeton on this issue.”