Some Residents Think Old Royalton Road is Unsafe
A group of residents has reached out to the city to address their concerns.
Some residents in the Old Royalton Road area think there are some serious safety concerns and aesthetic issues in their neighborhood.
So rather than just complain about it, they decided to get together and bring their concerns to the city.
“The city’s done very little to give back to this neighborhood,” said Frank Fantozzi, a resident and the unofficial spokesman of the group, which includes residents on Old Royalton Road, Summit Circle and Chippewa Hills.
Fantozzi said that the residents submitted a letter to the city in March, and at the beginning of September, they met with City Council. In the letter, it said that nearly 20 households had responded to a flyer asking about their concerns for the neighborhood.
The residents had a number of concerns, from the safety of cyclists and high school athletes running along the road to the speed of the drivers using it as a cut-through. Overall, Fantozzi said, the residents want to improve the safety of the neighborhood and raise the value of their homes.
Here were the residents’ safety-related proposals:
- Close one of the entrances to the neighborhood to reduce people using it as a cut-though
- Add sidewalks or widen road berms
And these were the proposals related to quality of life:
- Extend city services, like plowing, to Summit Circle, which is a private street
- Reduce the number of streetlights to reduce light pollution
- Move the Service Department buildings and use that space on Stadium Drive for parkland or recreation
- Add an observation deck to the new bridge on Old Royalton Road
Council listened to their concerns, asking questions and responding to the ideas, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything more will happen.
But the residents haven’t given up just yet. At the end of September, they sent a follow-up letter to the chairman of the city’s streets and sidewalks committee, adjusting the original requests based on the conversation with the city and asking for follow-up.
Jeannie Tavrell, an Old Royalton Road resident, said her main concerns were the ones related to safety – she’d like to see wider berms on the side of the road and to create a no-outlet street.
“People use this road as a shortcut,” Tavrell said, noting that many speed and that she thinks it’s a “disaster waiting to happen.”
Council President Larry J. Potla said the idea of closing the road isn’t a new one, and that it had been discussed years ago. It’s not likely to happen, as it would be difficult to police and could pose safety problems if emergency vehicles needed to use the road.
The group’s other safety concern—the widening of the sides of the road—could possibly be addressed in the future, Potla said. Sidewalks would have to be assessed to the residents, which they don’t want, but Potla said the city would be open to looking into widening the road’s berms when it’s time to repave it.
Potla said that while council and the city administrators work to address concerns of residents, he didn’t see much of a foundation to the other issues the group raised.
Some even seemed contradictory. For example, two of the concerns dealt with directly with safety, but others—like the proposal to remove some streetlights—would seem to make the area less safe, he said.