Did You Hear … ?

New Canaan Police said Wednesday that the department has fielded just two calls related to youth parties in 2018, down from nine in 2017. During a regular meeting of the Police Commission, Chief Leon Krolikowski also shared data that family dispute calls declined year-over-year from 62 to 54, and narcotics violations calls declined from 66 to 48, while fraud calls increased from 53 to 94 and identity theft increased from 25 to 55. ***

The town on Jan. 10 issued a building permit for the widely anticipated fifth platform tennis court at Waveny. More than one-third of the estimated $100,000 cost is to be paid for by private contributions raised among users of the facility.

Police Commission Approves Four Flashing Pedestrian Safety Signs for Bus Stops, Crosswalks

Town officials last week approved a proposal to install two pedestrian-activated flashing beacons at regularly used crosswalks that motorists tend to approach at speed, as well as flashing signs warning drivers of school bus stops at two locations in New Canaan. The “rapid reflective flashing beacons”—similar to the one already in place at Weed and Elm Streets—are to be installed at Kimberly Place and Elm Street and at the intersection of Old Kings Highway and Old Norwalk Road, where a crosswalk went in three years ago. Police Capt. John DiFederico told members of the Police Commission at their regular meeting that the department has received “numerous complaints from people coming out of the Kimberly [Place]-Seminary [Street] area that they they do not feel safe to cross there.”

And the relatively new crosswalk that connects Old Kings Highway to a trail that skirts Kiwanis Park and hooks up to a sidewalk that runs to Main Street downtown as well as Farm Road up to the schools “is getting a lot of use,” DiFederico said at the Sept. 18 meeting, held at New Canaan Police headquarters. Ultimately, Commission Chairman Sperry DeCew, Paul Foley and Jim McLaughlin voted 3-0 to recommend the installations. 

The solar-powered flashing beacons warning motorists of a ‘bus stop ahead’ will be installed on Wahackme Road, replacing one that had worked effectively in the past, as well as at a particularly dangerous area on Frogtown Road. 

DeFederico said the Frogtown Road school bus stop, located at the bottom of a curve and hill coming off of Weed Street, near a cemetery, appears to serve a private school in New Canaan.

Police Commission Votes 3-0 To Push Canoe Hill Traffic Island into Laurel

Officials last week approved a plan to push a sometimes-ignored traffic island out of the roadway at Canoe Hill and Laurel Roads, addressing a traffic problem that’s been before the town for years. Signs posted on the small traffic island instruct motorists to stay to the right, and those coming from Laurel Road must yield, creating a rotary. Yet as it is, motorists traveling westbound on Canoe Hill face the non-intuitive prospect of going around the traffic island, which sweeps cars slightly to the right (toward Laurel) in order to continue on that road, which then jogs left. The road also feels wide enough to motorists on that approach that it should accommodate two-way traffic on the left-hand side of the island. By pushing the island into Laurel Road and installing a stop sign for Laurel traffic, officials hope to make Canoe Hill a true two-way street all the way through.

New Canaan Police Monitoring of Motorists’ Speeds Down in 2018

As it ramps up enforcement at the top motor vehicle accident locations in town, the New Canaan Police Department also will start clocking motorists’ speeds more frequently than it has so far this year, officials said. So far in 2018, NCPD has seen a nearly 50 percent drop in its use of radar from last year, members of the Police Commission noted during the group’s most recent meeting. “Are we just enforcing less?” Commissioner Jim McLaughlin asked at the July 18 meeting, held at police headquarters. Police Chief Leon Krolikowski said that yes, officers “are just not setting up as much as they can, and not making as many stops as they are able to.”

“So that is part of the effort to refocus toward accident locations and giving people directions and the reason why we are doing this is that we want to reduce accidents, it’s not to stop people indiscriminately,” Krolikowski said. “That’s part of our refocus, so I am expecting to see those numbers go in the right direction as we continue to refocus the efforts.”

The increased speed enforcement comes as the department reported a drop in total motor vehicle violations cited, at the meeting, from 3,178 at this time last year to 2,237 in 2018.