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Princeton Town Council meeting discusses Witherspoon Street construction, parking issues

<h5>Princeton Municipality Council at the September 27 meeting.</h5>
<h6>Charlie Roth / The Daily Princetonian</h6>
Princeton Municipality Council at the September 27 meeting.
Charlie Roth / The Daily Princetonian

On Monday, Sept. 27, the Municipality of Princeton’s Council held its regular biweekly meeting. The main items discussed concerned upcoming construction around Witherspoon Street, displeasure over parking difficulties by the high school, and implementing more crossing guards in school areas. 

Upcoming developments on Witherspoon Street plan to make the area “very pedestrian-focused,” according to Municipal Engineer Deanna Stockton. One such project is the sidewalk replacement and tree installation from South Tulane Street to Vandeventer Avenue.

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Other issues discussed during the meeting included placing bin blocks to direct cars, outdoor dining, and restaurant trash pick-ups. The New Jersey Department of Transportation is prioritizing the replacement of the traffic signal at the intersection of Nassau Street and Witherspoon Street and may change the traffic flow to allow left turns for fire trucks only in order to protect pedestrians. 

The public comment section of the meeting focused on parking in front of neighborhood homes resulting from Princeton High School traffic. Some residents, including Alice Artzt, have been greatly upset by the possibility of people parking in front of their homes.

Artzt described her husband as “practically suicidal” and “just about ready to shoot himself” because people may park in front of their house. Councilmember Michelle Pirone Lambros assured her that no one wants their health to be jeopardized and that the issue will be discussed in a future meeting.

In addition, the Princeton Police Department has continued its search for crossing guards to work in front of area schools. According to Chief of Police Chris Morgan, 13 out of the 24 crosswalks don’t have a crossing guard on average every day. Any New Jersey resident is eligible to apply for the job. Working hours are 8-8:30 a.m. in the mornings, and 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the afternoons. The position is paid.

Stolen cars and burglaries have also been reported in the area. Chief Morgan pleaded the public to lock their cars to prevent further crimes of this nature.

Before the close of the meeting, the council unanimously approved an ordinance providing $8 million to implement more affordable housing projects, which Councilmember Eve Niedergang GS ’85 called “a huge win.”

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Charlie Roth is a news contributor for the “Prince.” He can be reached at charlieroth@princeton.edu or @imcharlieroth on Twitter or Instagram.

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