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East Main Street crosswalk remains under consideration

FREEHOLD – The creation of a pedestrian crosswalk on East Main Street is being pursued by the Borough Council.

In December, the members of Freehold Borough’s governing body passed a resolution authorizing Business Administrator Joseph Bellina to submit a Highway Occupancy Permit to the New Jersey Department of Transportation (DOT) for the development of a mid-block crosswalk on East Main Street.

East Main Street is Route 79, a state highway.

Officials have previously said if a new crosswalk is approved, it will be placed on East Main Street between South and Sheriff streets. State law requires motorists to yield to pedestrians who are in a crosswalk.

The resolution states that the Freehold Borough Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan, as commissioned by the DOT, recommended the installation of a mid-block crosswalk to promote a safe movement of pedestrian traffic in the downtown area, where Freehold’s business district is located.

According to the resolution, the mid-block crossing plan has previously been presented to representatives of the business district. The Freehold Borough Police Department has endorsed the installation of the crosswalk, according to the resolution.

According to a 2011 report prepared by the engineering firm Michael Baker Jr. Inc., crosswalks for pedestrians are justified and recommended on East Main Street because of the distance between the South Street-East Main Street and Center Street-East Main Street intersections, both of which have traffic signals that allow pedestrians to cross safely, and because of heavy pedestrian activity along East Main Street.

Borough officials said that as of Jan. 22, there had been no update from the DOT because state departments are in transition following the recent inauguration of Gov. Phil Murphy.

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