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June 20, 2014
Thoughts on Pedestrian and Traffic Safety

As many of you have likely heard, there was a serious accident involving a young student and a vehicle at the intersection of Heritage Hill Road (“The High School Hill”) and Broadway.  First, we want to wish the student a speedy recovery and offer his parents the offer of any help they need.  Second, we need to focus on ensuring we are doing everything we can to have the safest streets for pedestrians and motorists alike.  

As I have written several times in the past, improving pedestrian and traffic safety is one of my top priorities and the entire Board of Trustees agrees with me.   While our focus has been primarily on Main Street and the Main Street areas, we are also looking at major intersections in the Village.  In the coming weeks, we will work with our Police Department, the School District and the New York State Department of Transportation, who has jurisdiction on Broadway, to improve the major intersections on Broadway, including the entrance to the High School/Middle School Campus.
As part of our focus on increased safety in the Village we have asked our Police Department to increase their enforcement efforts.  While there has been an increase in summonses written, the most troubling fact is that a large majority of offenders are local Irvington residents.  While I promise that the Village will do everything we can to improve the overall safety of Irvington, the real changes need to come from residents themselves.  While we are looking at making crosswalks more prominent, adding signage, improving lighting, reducing speed limits, adding crossing-guards, etc. if residents do not start to better obey existing traffic laws, much of our efforts will be in vain.    So, please, allow yourself an extra two minutes to catch your train so you can slow down on Harriman Road, not roll through the stop sign on Circle Drive and actually stop for pedestrians on Main Street.  Together we can make Irvington even safer, I look forward to hearing your ideas.
Brian C. Smith