[Note: This article has been updated to say the pedestrian-activated beacons will run across South Avenue on the south side of the intersection with Maple Street.]
Saying the newly built New Canaan Library is expected to draw even more walkers in the area of South Avenue at Maple Street, town officials last week voted in favor of installing a pedestrian-activated flashing beacon there.
The new set of rapid rectangular flashing beacons or “RRFBs” will run across South Avenue on the south side, where there’s an existing crosswalk, according to Public Works Director Tiger Mann.
“Given the fact that the library will be opening and some of their people are going to be parking across at St. Aloysius and then St. Aloysius is still using the library as their library, the library becoming more of a hub, we request to upgrade the signage at South and Maple,” Mann told members of the Police Commission during their Jan. 18 meeting, held at police headquarters and via videoconference.
Commission Chair Jim McLaughlin, Secretary Shekaiba Bennett and member Paul Foley voted 3-0 in favor.
The appointed body’s approval allows the town to ask the state for an encroachment project for the proposed RRFBs, Mann said. (State Routes 124 and 106 run together on the stretch of South Avenue.)
Foley said, “There’s going to be increased traffic there. You also have people from The Vue, which is highly populated, probably going to the library as well. It’s just going to be a much more heavily foot-trafficked area.”
Mann said the library already has had RRFBs installed midblock, where the Center School parking lot feeds the new library’s Maple Street entrance.
The NewCanaan Library employees and construction workers have been parking on the property at ST.Aloysiius Church. The Center School lot has been used for the construction equipment and bulding materials. The church is now planning to build a new campus,, starting with the demolition of the school. Where are residents and visitors going to park ? We all experience frustration as we try to drive around town looking for a parking spot on a daily basis. In addition, the lost spots on Elm St, create more frustration. We have a Tourism Council to promote the town ,and yet nothing is done about parking.This has been a long term problem thet never seems to be addressed. Where are people going to park ?