Town To Install Additional Guiderails at Six Locations

Town officials last month approved a $107,000 contract with a Plainville-based company to install guiderails along the sides of the road at six locations in New Canaan. The Board of Selectmen at its Sept. 18 meeting voted 3-0 to approve the $107,170 contract with Eagle Fence and Guardrail, which includes $14,000 in contingency, plus $5,000 in for police protection for the work. The installations will be on Ponus Ridge, Frogtown Road, Clapboard Hill Road and Glen Drive, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann. “Two of these locations were actually given to us by a recent inspection done by the state,” Mann told the selectmen at their meeting, held in Town Hall.

Police Field Complaint About Motorists Holding Up Traffic To Pull into Starbucks Lot

Police have fielded a complaint about motorists who create traffic tie-ups downtown while traveling south on Park Street and then turning left, across the oncoming traffic lane, to the bustling Starbucks parking lot. 

According to the complaint, discussed by the Traffic Calming Work Group at its most recent meeting, the offending motorists often sit in the roadway before they can turn, holding up traffic and “causing other drivers to sit through two long traffic signals.”

That is “inconvenient for many citizens headed to the train station for work, to town for work or to other appointments,” according to the complainant. 

The complainant recommended installing a ‘No left turn’ sign to head off the problem, according to the letter, sent to Police Capt. John DiFederico, who sits on the Work Group along with public works, parking, fire and emergency management officials. The problem “does not really happen that often,” DiFederico said at their most recent meeting, held Sept. 18 at the New Canaan Police Department. “I don’t think many people pull that way in and if you have to sit through two cycles of a traffic light, it’s not the end of the world. But I don’t see that many people wanting to go into Starbucks that way, because it’s such a hassle.

$10,000 in Improvements Planned for Colonnade at Mead Park

Town officials last week approved a $10,000 contract with a Norwalk-based company to improve the pedestrian access areas at the heavily used colonnade in Mead Park. A WPA project that originally had been a wading pool and was converted into a “victory garden” following World War II, the grassy colonnade area hosts community events such as the cherry blossom festival, an annual breakfast hosted by the New Canaan Beautification League and junior prom photo gatherings. At its regular meeting Tuesday, the Board of Selectmen approved a contract with Nature’s Way Landscape Associates of Norwalk to rebuild the cheek walls, steps and walkway there. Public Works Director Tiger Mann said New Canaan-based Keith Simpson Associates, a prominent landscape architecture firm, provided a “nice plan for work” at the colonnade that include four separate items. As of now, the town only has the funds to complete two of those four things, Mann said. Nature’s Way Landscape “are ones that are doing the work at Waveny right now and they are doing a very good job,” Mann said at the meeting, held in Town Hall.

‘We Felt It Immediately’: Downtown Merchants on the Loss of Parking Spaces on Elm Street

One month after town officials preliminarily “lined out” a new parking configuration on Elm Street that loses downtown New Canaan more than a dozen spaces, some merchants say the change already is having a dramatic effect on business. Though parking woes already were aired daily by customers, the new scheme that includes a legally required 25-foot buffer zone between a crosswalk and parking space “has had an immediate impact,” according to Maxine Berg, owner of Jade, a popular luxury fashion fitness boutique at 7 Elm St. “We felt it immediately, the minute those spaces were taken,” said Berg, who purchases parking permits for the Center School Lot for herself and staff at the shop. “Especially on my part of Elm. There were four, five spaces.”

Prompted by a resident’s formal complaint about New Canaan’s non-compliance with what appears to be a seldom-observed state law, the town rather suddenly in mid-July was compelled to eliminate 13 parking spaces on Elm Street, which has five crosswalks.

Selectmen Approve $26,000 Contract to Clean Out Oil Tank at Waveny House, Replace Service Lines

Town officials last week approved a $26,000 contract with a Bridgeport-based environmental company to clean out an oil tank at Waveny House and replace its service lines. The lines right now are taking in water and that’s causing the burner to blow out so that town workers have to restart it, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann. “We need new service lines installed,” Mann told the Board of Selectmen at its regular meeting, held Aug. 21 at Town Hall. “They are putting in a new fill tank on top.”

First Selectman Kevin Moynihan and Selectmen Kit Devereaux and Nick Williams voted in favor of a $26,311 contract with CTR Industries.