Search Results for: Safe Routes Red Bank

SAFE ROUTES MOVES AHEAD IN RED BANK

safe-routesMarc Dostie, Jim Willis and Jenny Rossano of the Safe Routes initiative.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A grassroots group focused on making it safer to walk or ride a bike in Red Bank is getting a little closer to fulfilling its mission.

Safe Routes Red Bank recently secured a non-financial grant of engineering help from the state Department of Transportation to raise awareness and implement new ways to make for safer, easier modes of getting around without a car.

Now that the grant is secured, it’s up to the DOT and borough officials, with some help from the Safe Routes group, to see the program through.

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RED BANK: BIKE SHARE PLAN IN THE WORKS

Biking in Red Bank —and possibly, Fair Haven and Little Silver — could get a boost under a push to bring a bike-sharing vendor to town. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank officials are exploring the possibility of allowing a bike-share vendor to offer its services in town, and inviting two neighboring towns to get in on the two-wheeled action, Business Administrator Ziad Shehady told the borough council last week.

 

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RED BANK: TRAFFIC TALK SLOWS WAWA PLAN

The Wawa site plan, with the store at top and gas pump island shown in yellow, calls for the creation of a new center lane on Newman Springs Road allowing motorists traveling in both directions to make left turns. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Like a motorist stuck in rush-hour traffic, a supersized Wawa convenience store and filling station proposed for a problematic Red Bank intersection inched forward Thursday night.

At issue as the zoning board weighs the plan: whether the project would make congestion worse or improve traffic flow near the intersection of Newman Springs Road and Broad Street.

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RED BANK: Q&A WITH ED ZIPPRICH

Election_2014_QA zipprich 011111Democrat Ed Zipprich has been on the council since 2009. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election for Red Bank council, incumbents Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich, both Democrats, face Republicans Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer. Here are Zipprich’s answers to questions sent to all four candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Edward Zipprich

Age: 54

Where did you grow up? In a small town similar to Red Bank in Staten Island, NY

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? 17.5 years

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RED BANK: BIKE-HOOP DREAMS

Some of Red Bank’s newly decommissioned parking meters (right) could be retrofitted as lock stands for bicycles. Borough Engineer Christine Ballard tells redbankgreen that officials are awaiting word on a grant that would pay for galvanized iron loop sleeves that slide on to former parking meter posts that have had their heads removed.

Meantime, biking-and-walking advocacy group Red Bank Safe Routes is collecting suggestions from residents on where they’d like to see more bike racks in town. Feel free to add your thoughts in a comment below. (Photo above courtesy NYC DOT. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: SIDEWALKS AS HOV LANES

mori-bus-100511A ‘walking bus’ destined for the Red Bank Charter School heads west on McLaren Place Wednesday morning. The group, organized with help from Safe Routes Red Bank, and others from around town celebrated International Walk to School Day. (Click to enlarge)

SAFETY PUSH MAKES IT TO MASTER PLAN

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

bicyclist1Red Bank’s team of two-wheeled street safety activists earned a small victory Monday night in their effort to make borough paths safer and more accessible to bicyclists and pedestrians.

As anticipated, the borough planning board voted to incorporate a lengthy bike and pedestrian safety report and recommendations into Red Bank’s Master Plan, the principle guiding document for development in town.

With the addition of the “Red Bank Bicycle/Pedestrian Planning Project” report, the group’s vision of shared streets and consideration of walkers and non-vehicular riders in future planning is coming into focus.

“We’re hoping (Red Bank) is safer and more community friendly,” said Jenny Rossano, one of the founders of Safe Routes Red Bank, whose members pulled in a non-cash grant to prepare the 106-page report. “We’re hoping people will walk and bike more, and that makes a community better.”

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A NIGHT OUT FOR RED BANK, FAIR HAVEN

natl-night-out-20101Scenes from the 2010 National Night Out in Red Bank. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

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It’s one night of the year where the badge and blue shirt come to represent something a little less  fear-inducing, when the local fuzz trades in authority to bond with those it protects over burgers and dogs.

National Night Out, the community outreach program that spans police departments coast-to-coast, gets going in select towns on The Green Tuesday night, a fitting lead into the lazy days of summer’s end when many families are preparing for another school year.

“It’s good to get everyone out. It shows the kids they don’t have to be afraid to interact with the police,” said Stephen Schneider, a patrolman in Fair Haven. “We’re not just out there writing tickets and telling them to put their helmets on. We’re there for everybody.”

Besides, who can resist a sanctioned chance to dunk a cop with a fastball?

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BIKERS GET SAFETY MARKERS IN RED BANK

chestnut-sharrow-071211Borough workers painted the first of a series of “sharrows” on the new pavement on Chestnut Street Tuesday morning. (Photo by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge)

A push to make Red Bank’s streets safer for bicyclists and pedestrians moved from the conceptual to the actual as workers installed markings on Chestnut Street Tuesday morning.

Eight so-called “sharrows,” depicting a bicycle beneath two directional arrows, were painted onto the freshly paved street, where eight street signs were also to be installed.

The dual-approach signage “just reminds motorists that they’re sharing the road with bikes,” said Jenny Rossano, of Safe Routes Red Bank, an advocacy group that lobbied for the markings. “It’s not a separate bike lane.” Read More »

BIKE AND PED SAFETY PLAN ROLLS ON

willis-rossanoJenny Rossano reviews the soon-to-be-adopted bike and pedestrian plan in Red Bank, while Jim Willis, in the background, views it on an iPad. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

When a group of residents banded together almost two years ago to make Red Bank’s streets safer for pedestrians and bicyclists, there were never any notions it’d be a fast-moving process. Compiling data, analyzing studies and working with local and state government simply don’t lend themselves to timeliness.

But in the long-distance course to effect change, a grassroots group made a leap forward Monday night when it all but secured adoption from the borough planning board of a 100-plus page report on bike and walker safety, including a multitude of recommendations on how to improve the way of life of those on two legs and two wheels.

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SNOW ADDED TO TOP PED SAFETY CONCERNS

snow-sidewalkIt doesn’t do much good if snow blocks access to a shoveled sidewalk, residents say. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

The list of concerns related to pedestrian safety are well-documented. Red Bank needs more traffic lights, better signage, sidewalk improves and more, residents say.

But now, with snow packed into blocks of ice at the end of sidewalks throughout town, fears are heightened that something bad is going to happen.

That concern, along with the usual gripes, were aired at Wednesday night’s monthly West Side Community Group meeting with police and Mayor Pasquale Menna.

“It’s not that the sidewalks are not shoveled. It’s just that the curbing is blocked with snow,” said Carl Colmorgen, a school crossing guard. “The crosswalks are there, but you can’t get to them because of the snow.”

But the problem is going to take time to resolve, officials said.

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PEDESTRIAN’S DEATH PROMPTS SAFETY TALKS

maple-w-frontBorough officials have asked the state DOT to look into safety improvements at the Maple Avenue/West Front Street intersection, where a pedestrian was killed two weeks ago. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

The death of a 40-year-old pedestrian two weeks ago has spurred Red Bank police and other officials into discussions with  the New Jersey Department of Transportation over safety at the intersection in which she was hit by a truck.

Additionally, local leadership is brainstorming ways to make walking on borough streets less hazardous, they say.

On the list to accomplish that goal: speed-limit reductions, more four-way stops, and changes to signs and lighting, specifically at the intersection of West Front Street and Maple Avenue, where Laura Martin was hit and killed by a New Jersey Transit truck on October 27.

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RESIDENTS GIVE THEIR TWO CENTS ON SAFETY

mary-lou-burdenMary Lou Burden, right, shows transportation consultant Dave Cox a problem spot on a map. Below, comments compiled on a street map. (Click to enlarge)

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Mary Lou Burden knows the challenges of trying to cross Shrewsbury Avenue in Red Bank.

A resident of the Bellhaven Commons condos on Locust Avenue, she’s used to standing in the crosswalk at Chestnut or Oakland street just waiting for passing motorists to take notice, slow to a stop and let her cross.

“If we had citizen’s arrest, I could make a lot of money for Red Bank,” she says. Drivers are “on the phone, rushing, texting, putting on makeup. They don’t even see you.”

Burden was among some 35 borough residents — including bicyclists, walkers, motorists and crossing guards — who  showed up at borough hall Thursday night to offer input on how to improve pedestrian and biker safety in town.

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IN SEARCH OF SAFETY FOR BIKERS & WALKERS

saferoutes1Rolling out of the East Side: the ‘Mori Place Marauders’ want to make biking and walking to school in Red Bank safer.

On a typical morning during the school year, commuters in downtown Red Bank might encounter an unusual sight: a cluster of dozen or so children, accompanied by a parent or two, crossing town from east to west on bicycles.saferoutes2

Led usually by Mori Place resident Marc Dostie, the rolling parade of pedal-powered ducklings crosses heavily traveled Broad Street and Maple Avenue before arriving at its destination, the Red Bank Charter School on Oakland Street.

It’s a healthy, social and environmentally hospitable alternative to automobile travel. It’s also often faster than travel by car. But it’s also somewhat fraught, says Dostie.

“A lot of times I feel I have to choose between a safer ride and a legal ride,” he says, referring to a need sometimes to direct his charges up onto sidewalks to avoid close encounters with parked cars or moving vehicles that hug the right curb.

“We encounter a lot of motorists who don’t seem to understand the rights of way of pedestrians and bicyclists in crosswalks,” he says.

On Wednesday night, a newly formed organization of which Dostie is a member hopes to begin addressing ways not only to improve safety for riders and walkers, but to make Red Bank more conducive to car-free commuting for kids.

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WEEKEND: ARTY CHAIRS, ST. PAT, FLYING ELVI

IraGlass(StuartMullenberg)Above: Public radio powerhouse Ira Glass brings his broadcast mojo to the stage of the Count Basie while, below, Elvis is back in the building, in the person (or persons) of Scot Bruce and Mike Albert. 

Friday, January 17:

ScotBruceMikeAlbertRED BANK: “Red Bank’s a beautiful town,” the professional Elvis Presley tribute artist Scot Bruce told us a few years back. “The King is alive and well around there.”

Never more so than January, when Scot teams up with fellow Presley-digitator Mike Albert for an Elvis Birthday Bash that comes to the Count Basie Theatre in its ninth annual edition at 8 pm. It’s a Kingly keynote to a weekend of sights, song, story and socializing that follows the tried-and-true template of “Elvi” events past. Bruce opens the show with a hip-shaking evocation of the early-days Elvis;, the stylistic savant who “changed the course of mighty rivers” way more than Superman ever did. He’s followed on the bill by Albert’s spot-on channeling of 1970s Elvis —— he of the rhinestoned jumpsuits, championship belts, oversized shades and jet-black helmet of lacquered hair. Take it here for tickets ($20 – $40) — and flip the record over for more TCB action this weekend.

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BIKE SHOP PLANS WEST FRONT ROLLOUT

Jonathan Erdelyi takes a break from painting the interior of the Red Bicycle Studio, his new bike shop on West Front Street. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

More and more, Red Bank’s a biking town.

There’s the Safe Routes Red Bank initiative, which aims to make it easier for kids to bike and walk to school, and beyond that, to improve safety for all riders and pedestrians.

There’s a master plan to do the same. There’s a group planning to establish a pilot program for bike-sharing here.

There are scads of bike commuters, local road racing groups and triathloners.

But since the departure of the Peddler from White Street half a decade ago, there hasn’t been a bike shop in town.

Jonathan Erdelyi, a 30-year-old national racing champion, has a fix for that.

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FAIR HAVEN: AMPING IT UP FOR THE TROOPS

dead-bank-greenDead Bank brings its Grateful Dead salute to the K of C this Saturday as part of a matinee musicfest in support of the Wounded Warrior Project.

Asbury Park might get the ink as the city “Where Music Lives,” but the bars, parks and sidewalks of the greater Red Bank Green can surely boast their share of bands, balladeers and bluesfolk.

This Saturday afternoon, a shufflemix of top local talent convenes in Fair Haven for a fundraiser showcase that could only be called Tunes for Our Troops.

A benefit for the nonprofit Wounded Warrior Project and its rehabilitative and transitional programs for severely injured service members, the four-hour fest takes place at the Fair Haven hall of the Knights of Columbus – Red Bank Council 3187. Kicking off at 2pm, it’s an event for which active service members will be admitted free of charge.

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BIKE & WALK PLAN GETS A SHEPHERD

willis-rossanoJenny Rossano, seen here in 2009 with Safe Routes Red Bank co-founder Jim Willis, will help coordinate the integration of a recent bike and pedestrian study with the town’s master plan. (Click to enlarge)

It’s probably a stretch to call her the borough’s bike czar. But Red Bank is about to get an official advocate for safe walking and biking.

Jenny Rossano of Worthley Street is expected to be named as a volunteer liaison to the borough planning and zoning boards to help spot potential conflicts with a recent study of pedestrian and bicyclist safety by Urban Engineers, a Philadelphia planning firm.

“I don’t want to be a czar of anything,” Rossano says with a laugh. “I just don’t want all this work that Urban Engineers did to be pushed under the carpet.”

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BIKE & PED PLAN HITS THE STREETS

bike-route-networkA “bike route network” map in the report details suggested locations for bike lanes, shared lanes, bike parking and more. Below, the cover page of the report. (Click to enlarge)

saferoutes-report-cover

Attention Red Bank pedestrians and bicyclists: your wish list is in.

A much-anticipated report on ways to improve biking and walking safety, titled “Red Bank Bicycle/Pedestrian Planning Project,” has been delivered to borough officials and is now available here at redbankgreen (see below).

Based in part on suggestions from dozens of borough residents who attended input sessions and completed questionnaires,  it contains a cornucopia of recommendations, ranging from simple upgrades to signage and traffic signals to the creation of bike lanes and roundabouts.

The comprehensive report is “exactly what we wanted, and then some,” says Jenny Rossano, speaking on behalf of Safe Routes Red Bank, a grassroots organization that promotes walking buses and other alternatives to car use.

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FAIR HAVEN: TROMBINO Q&A

On the ballot November 2: Fair Haven council candidate Sonja Trombino. (Photo provided by candidate. Click to enlarge.)

CORRECTION: ALL borough voters in the November 2 election are to cast in-person ballots at the Church of the Nativity parish center at 180 Ridge Road. An outdated list of polling places was incorrectly included in the original version of this post. Apologies to those who were inconvenienced.

Fair Haven voters will have four candidates to choose from when they elect two council members November 2.

Here’s what candidate Sonja Trombino had to say in response to a questionnaire sent to all four by redbankgreen.

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FAIR HAVEN: CHRISNER-KEEFE Q&A

fair haven meghan chrisner-keefe 101519Meg Chrisner-Keefe. (Click to enlarge.)

, ELECTION 2019Two borough council seats are up for grabs in Fair Haven’s November 5 election.

On the ballot are incumbent incumbents Jon Peters and Jacquie Rice, both Republicans, and Democratic challengers Meg Chrisner-Keefe and Mike McCue.

Here are Chrisner-Keefe’s written responses to questions posed to all Fair Haven candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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SHREWSBURY: DAVID DRAGONETTI Q&A

shrewsbury, nj, david dragonettiDavid Dragonetti. (Click to enlarge.)

shrewsbury, nj, election, q&A,Shrewsbury voters will choose a new mayor and two council members in the November 6 election.

Running to succeed two-term Mayor Don Burden are incumbent Republican Councilman Erik Anderson and Democrat David Dragonetti. The council contenders are Anderson’s running mates, Councilman Jeffrey DeSalvo and Council President Donald Eddy; and Democrats Carol Loeffler and Mandy Ngo.

Here are Dragonetti’s written responses to questions posed to all Shrewsbury candidates recently by redbankgreen.

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RUMSON SCHOOLS THINK SUSTAINABILITY

In November 2015, the Rumson Borough School District adopted Policy 7461: Sustainability — an initiative that guides our schools toward decisions designed to protect the environment from harm, educate our students to be environmentally responsible, and preserve natural resources.

More than a year later, the borough’s schools, Deane Porter and Forrestdale, have worked to put that policy into effect each day — and the district has formed a Green Team in support of various environmentally conscious projects.

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ON THE GREEN: BLIZZARD WATCH ISSUED

BROAD ST 122810Broad Street in Red Bank following a December, 2010 snowstorm. Below, a forecast map from the National Weather Service indicates a snowfall of 14 inches is “most likely” in on the Greater Red Bank Green this weekend, but could range as high as 22 inches. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

snow forecast 012116The National Weather Service issued a weekend blizzard watch Thursday morning for the region that includes the Greater Red Bank Green.

Late in the morning, crews from the Red Bank public utilities began laying salt brine on every street in town in an effort to keep the roads safe and delay the start of plowing efforts, DPU director Cliff Keen told redbankgreen.

“I think we’re ready,” said Keen, who’s overseeing his first snow challenge since replacing Gary Watson as department head last month. Most of the department’s staff was also on board for the 2010 blizzard, he notes.

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