Members of East Greenville Borough Council once again found themselves pondering ways to make their streets safer when a request for a stop sign on Second Street was considered at Tuesday night’s meeting.
Council has received complaints about motorists speeding from the YMCA pool and fields on Second Street, and one resident has requested a stop sign or some other safety measure be implemented to protect pedestrians on that block.
Borough Manager Jim Fry said a stop sign requires a traffic study and a borough ordinance, which would take time and money. And most council members agreed that a stop sign in the middle of the block, less than 50 feet from an intersection with a stop sign, would make little sense.
A more viable option would be a “Children at Play” sign, Mayor Ryan Sloyer said, but pointed out that motorists may not be likely to heed a sign.
“We can put all the bells and whistles that you want, but unless you can have a cop sit there 24/7, it’s the enforcement issue,” Sloyer said. He added that Upper Perk Police Chief Michael Devlin had suggested a speed bump to force traffic to slow down.
Fry said he would look into the restrictions on speed bumps to see if that is a possibility.
Sloyer pointed out that property owners could also fence off their yards from the street if they’re concerned about the safety of children on their properties.
“Really, that needs a sidewalk, I think,” Council President Josiah Pierson said. “Ultimately that would make it safer for the kids.”
Councilman Tim Huff asked if the YMCA still plans to move forward with its development project, saying that he thought the borough should ask the organization to put sidewalk in along Second Street if its project becomes a reality.
“Because there is a lot of pedestrian traffic, a lot of kids, a lot of day camps going down there, there’s no sidewalk there now,” he said. “I think the Y, when they do their development, needs to have that in there.”
However, Solicitor Barry Tomlinson and Sloyer pointed out that depending on the development plans, the organization may only need to draw up a development agreement with Upper Hanover Township, and not with the borough.
Sloyer also pointed to a rarely used 1921 ordinance that would allow council to direct the property owners to put the sidewalk in themselves as a possibility, albeit an unlikely one.
Council decided to get more information on the situation for the next meeting.
Council also received a request for a stop sign at Third and Cherry streets. Fry said he would look into the cost of a traffic study there.
In other roads news, Sloyer asked if council would consider commissioning a roads report from the borough’s engineering firm, Cowan and Associates. Fry said a road report would be expensive, likely costing thousands of dollars for a comprehensive study.
“Some of the issue, in my opinion, is we need to look at options for the roads that we know are bad, or what we can do,” Fry said. “Some of the roads, an overlay isn’t really the answer. And I know we’ve done that for years in the past – a road’s in bad shape, we overlay it. But if we don’t fix the problems under the road, an overlay is just going to be a waste of money too.”
Fry recommended waiting until closer to budget time to get a cost estimate from Cowan for a roads report. At that time, council might better determine if the cost is worth it, and some of the roads problems may already be solved by then, he said.
In other business, council voted unanimously to file in district court to fine two area businesses that have failed to pay their local services tax to the borough for 2012. Numerous communications with Prudential Insurance and Repeat Boutique have failed to yield results, according to Fry, and so council decided to pursue legal action.
Council also passed a motion to write a letter in support of releasing their educational access channel through Comcast for use by the high school to broadcast on.