Streetscape Steering Committee
Minutes of Regular Meeting
Wednesday, September 24, 2008, 6:30 pm
East Hampton Town Hall Annex
Agenda Item #1: Call to Order
Streetscape Steering Committee Chairperson Elizabeth Harris called the meeting to order at 6:39 pm. Other committee members present were Kevin Burnham, Ralph Stoeckle, and Sue Weintraub.
Agenda Item #2: Approval of minutes of August 20, 2008 Regular Meeting
Motion to approve the minutes of the August 20, 2008 Regular Meeting was made by Kevin Burnham and seconded by Ralph Stoeckle. Motion was approved unanimously.
Agenda Item #3: Communications and Announcements
The committee discussed the possibility of merging the Streetscape Committee with the Design Review Board. Since the DRB was formed by ordinance, the addition of extra members would require a change to the ordinance. An alternative might be to form a DRB task force to focus on streetscaping, which might allow additional volunteers but not require a change to the ordinance. The committee discussed whether the DRB ordinance should incorporate the Streetscape Committee’s focus, including traffic calming, traffic flow, and “complete streets” ideals.
Agenda Item #4: Streetscape plans
DOT is planning completion of work on the intersection of Main and High Streets in June, 2009. Per Ralph Stoeckle, DOT has discovered four drain lines and a sewer pipe under the sidewalk in the vicinity of Bethlehem Lutheran Church; the source of the water needs to be determined. In addition, the Shaw’s property appears to be the source of a water drainage problem. DOT is also waiting for AT&T to relocate cables.
Review by the Office of Policy and Management of the latest STEAP grant application is anticipated this month. However, due to the flagging economy, the committee questioned the likelihood of new STEAP grants being funded at this time.
The streetscape project is anticipated to have a $100,000 under-run as compared to projected construction costs. The committee discussed the possibility of using the funds to complete a signage program in the project area; also discussed was the potential of donating funds for completion of the Main Street bridge replacement project, which has gone over-budget due to increasing construction costs.
Agenda Item #5: Consideration of signage plan and Town features/destinations
Sue Weintraub reported that W. S. Sign Design’s 4-color digital imprinting would be at no extra charge. There is a possibility of a 2-4 week turnaround time, likely 8 weeks maximum.
Agenda Item #6: Middle Haddam Road
The committee is anticipating communication from DOT with specific suggestions; DOT had received recommendations from Tighe and Bond regarding traffic calming solutions for Middle Haddam Road.
Agenda Item #7: Next Steps
Check with Town Manager Jeff O’Keefe regarding the possibility of a DRB task force; specifically, the committee desires to know whether such a task force would have a finite lifespan or time limit and whether task force members would be required to be DRB members. Also investigate the possibility of using STEAP funds for completion of the Main Street bridge replacement project. Ask the Town Manager to defer purchase of the single light planned for installation in front of Town Hall, pending investigation into LED options.
Agenda Item #8: Public Comments
Evan Glaude of East Hampton questioned the disposition of the vacant property at the corner of Main and West High Streets, owned by Mr. DiStefano. Sue Weintraub reported that meetings have been held with the owner, and there is a plan to clean up the property while Mr. DiStefano owns it. A variance could be granted which would allow rebuilding on the same foundation footprint.
Agenda Item #9: Adjournment
The meeting was adjourned at 7:40 pm. The next SSC meeting is anticipated for October 15, 2008, 6:30 pm in the Town Hall Meeting Room.
Respectfully submitted by Elizabeth Harris.