Streetscape Steering Committee
Minutes of Regular Meeting
Wednesday, March 19, 2008, 6:30 pm
East Hampton Town Hall Meeting Room
Agenda Item #1: Call to Order
Streetscape Steering Committee Chairperson Elizabeth Harris called the meeting to order at 6:43 pm. Other committee members present were Kevin Burnham, Ralph Stoeckle, and Sue Weintraub.
Agenda Item #2: Approval of Minutes, February 20, 2008, Regular Meeting
Motion to accept the minutes from the February 20, 2008 Regular Meeting was made by Kevin Burnham and seconded by Ralph Stoeckle; the minutes were approved by unanimous vote.
Agenda Item #3: Communications and Announcements:
Kevin Burnham reported on the renovation of the Main Street bridge near the Public Library. The Design Review Board’s consultant will be coordinating with Heidi Hajna of TPA. The bridge will be a single span of approximately 70 feet in length; the cross-section shows relatively narrow sidewalks of 5 feet 4 inches (including curbing). Granite curbing has been proposed. The railing is above head height in order to meet code for both pedestrians and cyclists. The next Design Review Board meeting is scheduled for April 9, 2008.
Agenda Item #4: Streetscape construction documents
The committee reviewed 90% construction documents provided by Heidi Hajna from TPA Design Associates. DOT planned improvements to the Main Street/Route 66 intersection are scheduled to begin in April. TPA anticipates bidding on the streetscape project in early April.
Agenda Item #5: Signage plan
The committee would like input from TPA in formulating a plan for signage at three gateways to the East Hampton business district and village center, namely, the intersections of Route 66 with Maple Street, Main Street, and Lakeview Street (Route 196). Per Heidi Hajna, the Maple street intersection is out of the streetscape survey area, but she will take a look at the intersection when she is next in town. She also suggested that any gateway improvements at Main Street be incorporated into frontage/site design if the Town is able to acquire the DiStefano property. Any gateway improvements to the Route 196 intersection will be dependent upon the DOT’s planned alteration of that intersection, still in the planning stages. It will be important to have a list of Town features and destinations which would be identified
by gateway signs; committee members will formulate a list and coordinate with EDC.
The committee entered executive session with discussion of the DiStefano property.
Sue Weintraub suggested contacting the Vermont Sign Company regarding ideas for signs, location, and number. The committee considered whether additional lighting for signage would be needed at gateway locations, or if reflective surfaces would be sufficient.
Agenda Item #6: Streetscaping of the north side of East High Street
The committee wishes to have a plan in place for corresponding improvements to the north side of East High Street in the streetscape construction area, so that projects may be more easily accomplished when additional funding becomes available. The need for a pedestrian walkway along the north side was discussed, and the committee considered an idea to eliminate the existing sidewalk, instead joining the north side businesses with a walkway set far back from the street. The north side project would be complicated by a narrow right-of-way. The committee would like more input from TPA in planning these improvements.
Agenda Item #7: Other streetscaping/traffic issues
The committee discussed the possibility of addressing other traffic-related projects and coordinating them with efforts by the Economic Development Commission. The roadway around Lake Pocotopaug continues to be plagued by high-speed traffic; decorative crosswalk material has worn, is poorly visible, and needs to be refreshed. The committee considered whether removable speed bumps (placed for the busier warm months) would help to slow area traffic. The lake area might also benefit from improved signage noting crosswalks or warning motorists to reduce speed. Route 151 (Middle Haddam Road) in Middle Haddam also has difficulty with high-speed traffic. The committee discussed ways to link Middle Haddam with the parent community, such as by noting Middle Haddam features on gateway signage and making sure that a
signage plan includes Middle Haddam and Cobalt. Middle Haddam destinations and features would include Hurd Park, which could be tied in with the Airline Trail and cycling routes, including Route 151.
Agenda Item #8: Next steps
Heidi Hajna from TPA will be contacted regarding the possibility of attending the next streetscape committee meeting. The committee desires TPA’s assistance with plans for signage, streetscape improvements to the north side of East High Street, and formulating a bicycle policy. The committee also would like to view some color samples of the colored concrete band planned for the new sidewalks. The committee will also develop a list of Town features planned for inclusion in gateway signage.
Agenda Item #9: Public comments
Rosemary Kilpatrick identified herself as the owner of the Lakeshore Package Store and Governor’s Tavern properties; she was concerned regarding the loss of two front yard parking spaces due to streetscaping. Ms. Kilpatrick was reminded that the spaces are located in the right-of-way, owned by the State; her concerns will be forwarded to Heidi Hajna of TPA.
Agenda Item #10: Adjournment
The meeting was adjourned at 8:37pm. The next SSC meeting is scheduled for April 16, 6:30pm, in the Town Hall Meeting Room.
Respectfully submitted by Elizabeth Harris.