Twp. Council: More signs, no barriers for Camden Place
Township Council members said they will keep Camden Place open, but will try signs and a speed limit reduction on Union Valley Road to try and make the intersection safer.
charles kim photo
By Charles Kim WEST MILFORD – After hearing from several residents living in the Crescent Park development off Union Valley Road, the Township Council decided to keep one of the entrances open and to use signs to try and slow traffic down. Passaic County recommended that Camden Place, one of three access roads into the development, be shut down for a year due to poor visibility for vehicles turning onto Union Valley Road. A curve right before the intersection makes it hard to safely navigate out of the development. Several years ago, the council prohibited left hand turns from Camden Place to Union Valley Road south. Cars going north currently have a 45 m.p.h. speed limit and can appear quickly around the corner, making it difficult at times to even make a right hand turn. County officials wanted to close the road for a year to see if that improved the situation at the intersection. Council members, however, sent a letter to residents and asked them to come to the April 3 meeting to hear how they felt about closing the road on a trial basis.
The majority of residents attending the meeting, many living in the development for more than two decades, said they preferred to keep the road open with only right turns allowed out of the development. Even though they asked the council to keep the road open, the residents did say that the intersection can be difficult to safely navigate due to the speed of traffic heading north on Union Valley Road. Several said that drivers need to open their windows during the day in order to hear oncoming traffic before they appear around the corner. It is much easier at night, residents said, because they can see the headlights of approaching vehicles approaching well before they arrive at the corner. Council members also expressed concerns about emergency vehicle access to the development if the road was closed off. Instead of closing the road, council members said the town would replace missing signs and put up new ones to calm traffic there. One of the new signs may be flashing, reminding drivers of their speed approaching the intersection. The town may also use a state statute to reduce the speed limit to 35 m.p.h. because it is a suburban development. Standing on the northern corner of the intersection Saturday afternoon, one can see the problem regarding the sight line around the corner and the speed of the Union Valley Road traffic going past. In just a short period of time, one car makes a right onto Union Valley Road only to have another vehicle pop around the corner almost immediately after it turned. A few minutes later, two consecutive cars exit the development, both making illegal left turns onto Union Valley Road south.