City Council will vote next week on an ordinance that will set in motion the creation of a new public street through what today is Lot B as part of the 208-unit Main & Monroe development.
What makes a neighborhood walkable? According to Seattle-based Walk Score, it means having a main street or public space, “enough people for businesses to flourish and public transit to run frequently,” and streets designed for bicyclists, pedestrians, and transit, among other things.
The state’s suspension of the red light camera system isn’t stopping Rahway from capturing violators because the city’s two cameras had been in compliance, according to Police Chief John Rodger. State Department of Transportation officials said 63 of the 85 cameras in the state had not been tested to check that yellow lights were timed correctly (one second for every 10 miles per hour), according to this report from nj.com last month.
|St. Georges Ave at Maple Ave|
Rodger said the state’s blanket suspension of the red light program doesn’t affect Rahway because the timing of the city’s existing cameras (at Routes 1/9 at East Milton Avenue and St. Georges Avenue at Maple Avenue) were certified. Violations are still being captured — as they are in other towns that are in compliance — and once the suspension is lifted, violations will be issued. Rodger said the department has 90 days to issue a violation and expects the statewide suspension to be lifted shortly. He estimated about 1,000 violations monthly at Rahway’s two intersections.
Meanwhile, two more cameras are set to be installed later this summer, at Inman and St. Georges Avenues and Routes 1/9 and East Grand Avenue. After a 30-day test and evaluation period, Rodger expects they could be operational by sometime in September.
The $55 fine is split between Union County and Rahway, which receives another $18.50 for court fees (for a total $46). An additional $55 goes to the State Highway Trust Fund, according to Rodger, and the Safe Corridor violation (along Routes 1&9) is $140.
The cameras went into effect Aug. 11 after a warning phase in July. Construction is supposed to start this week on cameras at St. Georges and Maple avenues, according to Police Chief John Rodger.
A survey by the Police Department at the time state approval was sought indicated as many as 60 violations per hour at Routes 1/9-East Milton Avenue, or almost 200 a day.
8/24 UPDATE: Based on 3,000 violations per month, Rahway would receive $1.6 million in revenue each year from paid violations, according to Rodger. Originally, both intersections combined were projected at 3,200 violations per month but he said Route 1 is far exceeding initial estimates and may do 3,000 monthly on its own. Some drop-off would be expected as people get acclimated, he said. Projections for the next applications the city will submit are close to 200 per day and 150 per day, respectively, though Rodger declined identify those until they are approved.
The $55 fine is split between the county and city, which receives another $18.50 for court fees (for a total $46). An additional $55 goes to the State Highway Trust Fund, according to Rodger, and the Safe Corridor violation (along Routes 1&9) is $140.
The vendor, which is responsible for equipment, software and notification costs, will receive monthly fees of $18,200 for East Milton and $17,000 for Maple, with the city and county splitting the total $35,200 monthly fee ($422,000 annually).
City Council discussed the proposal during a meeting earlier this summer. Requests for Proposals (RFP) will go out after the pilot gets approval and vendors will vie to install the cameras. But tn 18 months since the state program started, none have been installed yet because of court battles, according to Police Chief John Rodger. “I’m sure there will be test cases played out in the courts on this,” he said.
Rahway is in the second cycle of approvals by the state Department of Transportation and towns that were in the first cycle are not yet installed. “We will continue to pursue it until it gets done,” he said.
A survey by the Police Department indicated as many as 60 violations per hour at Routes 1/9-East Milton Avenue. Eight summonses issued per hour would project a total of almost 200 a day, or 70,000 per year. By comparison, an average motor vehicle stop takes 20 minutes so one officer could theoretically complete three an hour — if assigned to nothing but traffic enforcement, Rodger said. The department averages between 10,000 and 12,000 violations per year, he added, with about 6,100 this year through mid-August.
Revenue from the fines, which are doubled because the area is a state-designated “Safe Corridor,” is shared between the state, county and town, according to Rodger.
Most of you seem to think Irving Street could do without a couple of the stop signs, according to the latest poll:
Not the sexiest of poll questions, but it’ll give you something to do while you’re visiting the site. Check out the new poll on the right side of the page (which was submitted by a reader!).
Work is expected to begin next month to reconfigure the intersection of Central Avenue and Hamilton, Irving and West Main streets.
The project will add a traffic signal to the intersection to coordinate traffic coming from five different directions and address the no-left turn from West Main to Irving streets, according to City Administrator and Redevelopment Director Peter Pelissier.
Work also will include creating a triangular traffic island between Hamilton and Central and widening Irving opposite the Union County Arts Center.
City Council on Wednesday night approved a $224,000 contract with Piscataway-based Fai-Gon Electric for signalization.