January 23, 2007 Special Meeting
|Date:||January 23, 2007|
MINUTES OF A SPECIAL MEETING OF THE TEANECK TOWNSHIP COUNCIL
HELD IN THE
ON TUESDAY, JANUARY 23, 2007
Mayor Katz called the Special Meeting of the Teaneck Township Council to order at 3:10 p.m., and asked all those present to rise for the Pledge of Allegiance.
Present: C. Feit (arrived 3:20 pm), C. Kates, DM. Parker, C. Honis (arrived 3:35 pm),
Absent: C. Rudolph, C. Gussen.
Also Present: H. V. Fall, Municipal Manager; R. J. LaMorte, Municipal Clerk.
Adequate notice of this meeting has been provided by adoption of Resolution #466-06, setting the 2007 meeting dates and Resolution #7-07, amending the 2007 meeting dates, sending a copy to THE RECORD, THE SUBURBANITE, THE BERGEN NEWS/SUN BULLETIN, THE CONNECTION, THE JEWISH STANDARD AND SU GUIA, filing a copy in the Township Clerk’s Office and posting it on the Municipal Building bulletin board, and the Mayor hereby directs that this statement be included in the minutes.
GOOD AND WELFARE
Art Vatsky - Garrison Avenue - Spoke about energy conservation, increasing mass transit, West Shore rail line, and lifestyle changes which have increased energy uses by the public.
Jordan Wouk - Cumberland Avenue - Spoke as the Greenbelt Committee representative for the Route 4 transportation corridor and their interest in a handicap accessible pedestrian bridge across Route 4, specifically the one at the western most portion of Teaneck where there are less than 20 steps to currently access the bridge.
Jeff Forrest -George Street - Spoke as Chairman of the TRA saying the Township should be involved in the timing, staging and scheduling of work as it will have a significant impact on the Township.
C. Kates made a motion to close the Good & Welfare portion of the meeting to the public. Seconded by DM. Parker and carried by the following vote.
In Favor: C. Feit, C. Kates, DM. Parker, Mayor Katz.
Absent: C. Rudolph, C. Honis, C. Gussen.
MEETING -NJDOT Commissioner Kolluri - Route 4 Corridor.
Present from the New Jersey State Department of Transportation: Commissioner Kris Kolluri; Planning & Development, Robert Marshall, Jr. & Tony Obidike; Asst. Commissioner Govt. and Community Relations, Sharon Shinkle Gardner; and Communications, Erin Phalon.
Present from the District 37 Legislators: State Senator, Loretta Weinberg; State Assemblywoman, Valerie Huttle. Previous commitments prevented State Assemblyman, Gordan Johnson from attending before 3:55 pm.
Also Present from the Township: C. McKearnin, Township Engineer; M. Ferrante, Police Sergeant and Assistant Public Works Director J. Clementi.
C. Kates spoke to those present about the current difficulties with congestion on Route 4, the Greenbelt area. She explained that what prompted the Council to request this meeting was the last meeting, in September 2006, of the Technical Advisory Committee on the Route 4 Corridor Study at which time the report provided to the municipalities was there was no funding for any potential improvements to Route 4. The Township Council asked the District 37 Legislators to facilitate this meeting.
Senator Weinberg questioned the proposed widening, upgraded signage, lights, Belle Avenue bottleneck and acceleration lanes to enter Route 4.
Mayor Katz invited Mr. Wouk to provide some information about the Preserve the Greenbelt Committee’s input to the Council about the potential widening of Route 4. Mr. Wouk referred to the two previous resolutions adopted by the Council and provided the NJDOT.
Commissioner Kolluri discussed the Route 4 corridor, the identified areas in need of improvement, the potential third lane for buses, areas for merging onto and exiting from Route 4, and most importantly stressed the issue of safety.
Commissioner Kolluri stated the bridge over Windsor Road and railroad tracks will cost $30 million to replace and that it has been rated the 37th worst bridge in New Jersey. His priority is to find the funding to take care of this safety issue.
He also advised that the NJDOT would commit up to $1 million to enhance pedestrian safety and accessibility to and by Route 4, in Teaneck, and the Township could expect a letter from him, committing to this in approximately 4 weeks. The Commissioner also clarified that the bridge remained safe to use and if at any time NJDOT determined it was not, they would take the necessary steps i.e. To close the bridge or post a load maximum or take other steps to ensure safe usage.
Discussion followed about making the pedestrian bridge at Lincoln Place handicapped accessible. Commissioner Kolluri said this would also be considered as part of the pedestrian enhancement money being committed to Teaneck.
DM Parker commented about the complaints received about the condition of the exit from Route 4 onto Teaneck Road northbound. DM Parker advised the Manager had contacted NJDOT and had not received a response. Commissioner Kolluri advised he would have staff review it.
Senator Weinberg stressed the need for lights at the underpasses. Mrs. Fall spoke about the lighting of the underpasses at Windsor Road and Teaneck Road and that the Township is awaiting a response from NJDOT on this matter.
Commissioner Kolluri stated that the State understood the Township’s position that there should be minimal invasion to the greenbelt area for widening of the highway, but he could not make any promises since any work would be done to address safety concerns.
Mayor Katz thanked the Commissioner and the District 37 Legislators as well as the members of the public for the meeting.
On a motion made, seconded and unanimously carried, the meeting was adjourned at 4:07 pm.
Robyn J. LaMorte, RMC, CMC