May 4,2017

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The massive new 66 unit, multi-retail store complex coming to Franklin and Broad sets off a chain reaction of traffic problems in Ridgewood. As always, taxpayers will be left holding the bag for nearly a million dollars worth of needed traffic signal upgrades alone.

In the zoomed in version of developer John Saraceno’s “rendering” above we see the Franklin & Broad intersection which will be drastically impacted by the new 5 story building and the nearby 4 story Chestnut apartments. The archway on the right is one of two entry/exit for the 150 new parking spots on Franklin. The current lot is private and not open to the public. There will be a great deal of new traffic at one of the most important, dangerous, and crowded intersections in the village.
The new light at this intersection will cost $300k, Saraceno has offered to pay 25% [which is more than the law requires]. The bigger problem is how other, non-upgraded intersections will handle the traffic flow. By law, developers of Ridgewood’s 4 new high-density buildings only have to pay a small fraction of any needed new lights.
Listen here to the village’s traffic expert, Andrew Feranda:
As reported:

The board also spent considerable time with its own traffic professional, Andrew Feranda, further discussing the Franklin Avenue thoroughfare.  They looked specifically at the coordination of traffic lights in the area. Feranda recommended coordinating the timing of the lights on Franklin Avenue at Broad Street and Oak Street to ensure more efficient traffic flow.

Voigt said any traffic improvements made to those intersections, the two closest traffic lights to the development, could necessitate changes at all lights from Wilsey Square to Maple Avenue. Feranda agreed the corridor would be more efficient with all the lights working in tandem.

“It certainly doesn’t move traffic efficiently if they’re not coordinated,” said Feranda.

Feranda said his layout would look “similar” to the plans put forth by the applicant. He cited the use of the signalized intersection at Broad Street and Franklin Avenue, and the fact that the driveway, on Chestnut Street, was about as far away from Franklin Avenue as possible.
All 4 of the high-density developments downtown are allowed thanks to controversial laws championed by Ridgewood resident Saraceno and then-mayor Paul Aronsohn.