Residents will have a chance to chime in on the controversial traffic changes planned for Lewis Lane Extended and the Grace Manor neighborhood.
A town hall meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. at City Hall to discuss traffic patterns through Grace Manor, as well as the possibility of finding an alternative connection to U.S. Route 40.
Residents of Grace Manor spoke out during the May 7 City Council meeting, arguing that high rates of speed and narrow roads with on-street parking pause a safety issue for the community.
The meeting was born out of a series of comments from residents at that meeting.
"Everything is on the table. We understand it’s a major problem. I see it all the time," then Council President Bill Martin said. "I think there’s enough momentum on this now."
John Giganti, of the 100 block of Joehill Drive, spoke first during that meeting, representing the residents of the neighborhood by saying, "The problem is the traffic, and it's not the neighborhood traffic."
Emily Yost, of the 100 block of Joehill Drive, said she's concerned primarily with the safety of children in the neighborhood.
"We like to be a community together. We used to have block parties. We used to have the children on the street," she said. "We are watching children every day. I put our swingset in the back yard because I don’t feel safe to have my 5-year-old play in the front yard."
Stuart Hutchinson, of the 100 block of Grace Manor Drive, urged City Council to take action on the issue.
"This is the third time in which I’ve addressed this council on this matter dating back to Sept. 2009," he said. "My concerns began when Lewis Lane was cut through to Route 40, which we were told would not happen when we bought our house."
Hutchinson said he came to council after a near-accident at the area where his daughter boards her school bus. He said a car was struck by a train at Lewis Lane Extended, and another incident involved a high-speed chase through the winding, narrow street.
"There’s yet to be a permanent resolution," he said on May 7. "I do applaud this council now for trying to get traction on this issue. I fear that we will not make the progress necessary. I’ve worked the traffic and safety committee through some possibilities, and yet we’re still working on this issue."
Lisa Clutchey, of the 100 block of Joehill Drive, said she chose to live on her street after seeing the high volume of traffic on Grace Manor Drive.
She said a major issue is the number of homes built off Chapel Road that utilize the neighborhood as a shortcut. She pointed to Bayview Estates as a source that provides a great deal of traffic through Grace Manor.
"That’s a huge neighborhood with a huge number of cars that are coming down through our neighborhood," Clutchey said.
Jim Clark, who lives in the 100 block of Joehill Drive, said he was the first neighborhood association president for Grace Manor. Finding an alternate cut-through to U.S. Route 40 is the best solution, he said.
"There has to be another access to Route 40 somewhere somehow," he said. "As you’re all aware, there’s another development going in along Chapel Road … that’s another group of cars looking to get to Route 40."
TELL US: How would you solve the traffic issues through Grace Manor and Havre de Hills? Will you be attending Wednesday's meeting? Leave a comment.