Aldermen discussed a variety of traffic issues with Dave & Busters planners on Monday night as a part of the City Council Committee on Special Permits meeting.
During the session, a traffic engineer presented possible mitigations for traffic issues at the site, which would be located at 275 Mishawum Road.
In an effort to avoid traffic back ups, Dave & Busters representatives proposed several possible changes in the area. The items included eliminating one “No Turn on Red” sign and adding one at another intersection, changing one lane to a through/right turn lane on Ryan Road, and performing a traffic study for four months prior to occupancy.
The major message that would need to get across to residents was the importance of traveling on Ryan Road to Industrial Parkway, rather than Mishawum Road to Industrial Parkway to get through the area because there are two lanes of traffic on Ryan Road.
What had some City Council members hesitant, however, was the fact that according to the planners, drivers would be taking a longer route on Ryan Road, even if it would potentially take less time because of synchronized traffic lights.
“I’ll keep an open mind, but I find it hard to believe we’ll be able to educate the public to take a longer route to get to that area,” said Alderman at Large Richard Haggerty. “It’s going to be extremely challenging.”
Several aldermen expressed concerns about unanswered questions with the Dave & Busters project as a whole. Ward 6 Alderman Michael Raymond said he spoke with the DPW Superintendent, who said he was not completely satisfied with the answers he received to questions he asked about the proposal.
In addition, Ward 5 Alderman Darlene Mercer-Bruen said she wanted to know about a timed crosswalk in the area, and also what the new business could mean for traffic on Olympia Ave.
“People still have many questions about this,” said Mercer-Bruen. “It’s a very big project. I think it’s important to make sure the questions are answered. There are concerns about traffic leaving the site and going into the residential area. Perhaps there are more things that can be done here.”
After the presentation, no action was taken other than to hold the item in committee until a meeting on October 7.
Audience member Paul Meaney, meanwhile, expressed his displeasure with how long the process has taken, with no immediate end in sight.
“They don’t even have a building. They may never get a building there,” said Meaney. “My saying to you is this. If you don’t want this company here, say it. If you do, work with them. They’ve been in this process for a long time.”