Saturday, May 31, 2008

Fair Haven brainstorms how to become more pedestrian-friendly

By News Channel 8's Tricia Taskey Posted May 31, 2008

New Haven (WTNH) _ The Fair Haven section of New Haven is hoping to become more pedestrian friendly. A group of residents hit the streets Saturday with a consultant for ideas on how to do that.

A group of Fair Haven residents walk through their neighborhood Saturday with Consultant Dan Burden, who is considered to be an expert at making communities more pedestrian friendly; something these residents say they need to do here.

"We know these streets, we live here," Burden said. "We see what's going on. He can empower us to come up with a design that can really work for us."

Alderwoman Erin Sturgis-Pascale says their biggest problem is speed. "As cars get faster and faster, they become more deadly," she says. "People raising children in this neighborhood are frightened; they fear for their lives they really do."

Bobby Banquer has lived in this neighborhood for 30 years, she's seen pedestrians killed here and dozens of terrible accidents. "I wake up all the time to car crashes and have to call 911 at 2-3 in the morning," Banquer said.

They're hoping Burden's suggestions will help them make Fair Haven a more "walkable" neighborhood. "You can put a huge tree and some frowned and if you do this, you will cut crashes with injuries by about 90-percent."

"He mentioned round abouts, mini circles and raised intersections," Alderwoman Sturgis-Pascale said. "He's not a fan of speed bumps and I agree with that; we don't want to do anything to take away value from our neighborhood. Whatever we do, we want to add value make it more business friendly and family friendly.

The group admits it doesn't have any money for these improvements but with what they learned out here Saturday, they can petition the state for funding to make the needed improvements.

No comments: