The town’s highest elected official said Tuesday that the town should consider paving an access road through the woods behind New Canaan High School to South Avenue. Doing so could “improve the traffic flow around the high school” and help buses “getting out of the property more than one way,” according to First Selectman Kevin Moynihan.
“We had a rather interesting discussion with [Town Councilmen] John Engel and Steve Karl the other day … as to whether or not—and I talked about this to the superintendent last week—whether we ought to be building this road as another access out of the high school to South Avenue anyway, regardless of whether we did a police station there,” Moynihan told members of the Selectmen’s Advisory Committee on Buildings and Infrastructure during their regular meeting, held via videoconference.
The comments came during a discussion of proposals to either renovate the existing police station at 174 South Ave. or build a new one somewhere else (a Saxe Middle School baseball field near the YMCA rose to “the top of the heap” among options for the latter, according to an architect hired by the town to study options). The wooded parcel between NCHS and Saxe—sometimes referred to as Waveny’s “panhandle,” as it includes walking trails that connect to the park—runs along South Avenue from the corner of Farm Road.
Identified in the past by some as a good location for development—a proposal that faced strong opposition and was scuttled—the parcel is one of a handful that a team assembled by Moynihan had evaluated as a possible future police station site. Though Moynihan’s team said it prefers the Saxe ball field site, town officials have called for more details about the prospect of building a new NCPD on the parcel, along with the Locust Avenue Lot, Lumberyard Lot and mulch pile off of Lapham Road.
Moynihan noted during the meeting that another access road that runs south of the high school, past the water tower and toward the Orchard Field in Waveny, has “helped the traffic situation at the high school.”
Referring to the possibility of building a police station between NCHS and Saxe, Committee member Amy Murphy Carroll said the new access road “could be a project regardless of whether we place something there.”
Moynihan said, “That’s what I just said.”
The existing access road between the high school and Waveny, dubbed “Tiger Trail” for the town’s Public Works director, is gated and its use is limited.