ALLENTOWN – As municipal officials in Allentown continue to try and work out the details of a proposed truck ban on certain streets in the community, they have a meeting scheduled for Nov. 22 with Monmouth County representatives.
During a meeting of the mayor and Borough Council on Nov. 9, Church Street resident Jacqueline Bossart asked for updates on two initiatives Mayor Thomas Fritts and members of the council have been pursuing for several years.
The two initiatives are speed enforcement zones and a truck ban in Allentown.
Bossart said the constant stream of trucks on Church Street has made for a less-than-ideal quality of life for residents.
Fritts said borough officials are waiting for the signs that will warn motorists about the speed enforcement zones to be installed.
He said tickets that are issued to motorists who violate the speed limit in a speed enforcement zone will require an appearance in municipal court in Upper Freehold Township, which serves as Allentown’s municipal court.
The mayor said he is hoping word will get out about the speed enforcement zones and the penalties resulting from a violation, and that once that happens, motorists will not take their trip through Allentown for granted.
Borough officials and the Allentown Police Department have been working on the issue for several years in an attempt to have the designated speed enforcement zones marked and to slow down vehicles as they pass through town.
A Sept. 29 letter from Monmouth County Engineer Joseph Ettore to Borough Administrator and Municipal Clerk Laurie Roth states that the county has reviewed the submitted signs and finds them “to be generally consistent with the criteria established in the current edition of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.”
The speed enforcement zone warning signs are proposed to be installed on county routes 28 (Old York Road/South Main Street), 524 (South Main Street), 526 (Waker Avenue/Church Street) and 539 (High Street) in Allentown.
The proposed truck ban “is a little more complicated,” Fritts said. “We have a meeting scheduled with the county commissioners and we have support for a truck ban on Waker Avenue and on Church Street.”
The mayor said borough and county officials must exercise caution with a potential truck ban because “the truck ban (on certain streets) could create more truck traffic on Main Street because an alternate route has not been identified. We have a traffic engineer working on that.”
Borough officials have said an Amazon facility on Old York Road (Route 539) in Robbinsville, just beyond the borough’s border, is the source of much of the truck traffic in Allentown.
Fritts previously said the truck ban “is an ongoing project and we continue to be committed to a truck ban in the borough. …
Council members recently passed a resolution which authorizes Shropshire Associates to complete work reviewing a letter of response from Monmouth County regarding Allentown’s proposed truck ban.
In the resolution, municipal officials said Allentown “wants to make sure it has done its due diligence in regard to traffic impacts on the community following the implementation of (the) truck traffic ban.”