Turning Signal to Be Installed at Olcott Square in Bernardsville
Longtime concern about left turn heading north on Mount Airy Road to be addressed, mayor says.
The traffic turning patterns at Olcott Square in the center of Bernardsville have for many years been a headache for local officials and drivers. But next week — at long last — Mayor Lee Honecker said that the state is planning to install a left-turn arrow on Mount Airy Road as it crosses Route 202.
Honecker told the Borough Council on Monday he has heard the state Department of Transportation will begin underground construction to allow the change in the traffic signal, with work to begin next Monday, March 18.
Honecker said he had received the news from N.J. Sen. Anthony Bucco, (R-Dist. 25), who represents the borough.
Honecker said that reportedly a resident had contacted Bucco's office expressing concern about the lefthand turn onto Route 202, now requiring the traffic heading north to turn in front of oncoming traffic heading south into the intersection.
The intersection is a major hub not only for state highway Route 202, but also for residents and drivers from Basking Ridge and south who are heading north along Mount Airy Road, which is a county road.
Bucco's office apparently followed up, and was told that the DOT had intended to perform the work in 2012, but had been diverted by Hurricane Sandy.
Honecker recalled that the project had almost come to fruition years earlier, around 2006 or 2007.
Nevertheless, Honecker said he wanted to send a thank you "to that resident who contacted Sen. Bucco."
The work on the light is due to begin during the final stages of another project on Mount Airy Road, south of Olcott Square, to install new water mains on the road in anticipation of a larger reconstruction project by the county.
Through traffic now is being detoured while work is progress, beginning with barricades at the intersection of West Oak Street and Pill Hill Road in Basking Ridge. That project is due to be over by the end of March, a representative for New Jersey American Water Company said last week.