Weekly Feature

2017-09-07 / Editorials

Real change to traffic patterns was missed

Bee Editorial

About 15 to 18 years ago, according to Depew Police Chief Stan Carwile, then-residents of Bloomfield Avenue could have had their street turned into a dead end, with the state footing the bill.

Now that ship seems to have sailed, with the state refusing to pay for any updates to the street, leaving Mayor Jesse Nikonowicz and other municipal leaders to opt for a quick fix instead, the most likely of which is to put in a four-way stop at the intersection of Bloomfield and Wenona Street.

The state Department of Transportation’s budget doesn’t have room, at least as of this year, to close off the connection between the two major thoroughfares by making Bloomfield a dead end closer to Broadway.

Sure, a four-way stop at the corner of Bloomfield and Wenona will help curb the amount of nasty accidents at that intersection, but will it change the way people decide to get from Terrace Boulevard to Broadway and vice versa?

The traffic pattern may remain the same, with people pushing through on their way to and from work. However, there is the possibility that people will want to avoid the area because of the stop signs.

For Bloomfield families with small children, the fix is a welcome one, but it may not be the best for children who want to play outside.

There’s still the possibility of cars rolling through stop signs or testing the 30-mph speed limit.

Police may put the speed sign back up after stop signs are installed, to see if there’s a noticeable change in data collected.

In addition to a missed opportunity with the area’s traffic pattern, a lack of summer Village Board meetings has put a hold on adding stop signs to the intersection. If Depew had two meetings per month for July and August, the public hearing could have taken place after the study was done in July, and a resolution could have been added to the agenda for the beginning of August.

Conceivably, the accident that occurred Aug. 10 could have been avoided if stop signs were put in place midsummer.

There are always variables out of our control when it comes to car accidents, but stop signs could have tipped the scales in favor of a safe intersection.

Hopefully, Depew leaders will continue to push for a change to Bloomfield other than the stop signs, especially if five or 10 years down the road there are more families in an ever-expanding neighborhood, with children who want to take full advantage of yards in a historic part of Depew.

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