The Princeton Council has endorsed the installation of a roundabout at Rosedale Road and General Johnson Drive – as well as a reduction in the speed limit on Rosedale Road in Princeton – to improve safety for students, pedestrians and bicyclists.
The Princeton Council, which approved the two resolutions at its May 23 meeting, is sending them to the Mercer County Board of County Commissioners for action. Rosedale Road is maintained by Mercer County.
Mercer County officials have proposed constructing the roundabout at Rosedale Road and General Johnson Drive, which is the entrance road to the Johnson Park School, over a two-month period beginning June 21. The project is expected to be completed by Sept. 6 in advance of the first day of school for the Princeton Public Schools.
Rosedale Road would be closed to through traffic while the roundabout construction project is under way, but access to the Johnson Park School and the Greenway Meadows Park would be maintained during the two-stage project.
During the first stage, visitors to Greenway Meadows Park and the Johnson Park School would have to detour to Province Line Road and drive east on Rosedale Road. During the second stage, they would be able to reach the park and the school by driving west on Rosedale Road from Elm Road.
The second resolution calls for reducing the speed limit on Rosedale Road to 35 miles per hour (mph) between Elm Road and Province Line Road. The 25 mph speed limit in the school zone, which is in effect when the school zone warning lights are flashing, would not change.
The current speed limit on Rosedale Road varies – from 25 mph near Elm Road, to 40 mph around General Johnson Drive and 45 mph to Province Line Road. The speed limit would be a consistent 35 mph from Elm Road to Province Line Road.
Mercer County launched a study of Rosedale Road in response to safety concerns voiced by Princeton residents to protect bicyclists and pedestrians, including children who cross Rosedale Road on their way to the Johnson Park School on General Johnson Drive.
There are some safety measures in place, such as pedestrian-activated crossing lights and signage that indicate a school zone. There are flashing overhead lights that announce reduced speed when children are present.
Princeton officials had requested a traffic signal at the intersection of Rosedale Road and General Johnson Drive, but it did not meet the minimum standards for the installation of a traffic signal.
Princeton residents have been stepping up their push for increased safety measures on Rosedale Road, following the death of an elderly man in August 2021. He had activated the pedestrian crossing light and was crossing Rosedale Road when he was struck and killed by a car whose driver allegedly did not slow down, according to reports.
Mercer County had already hired a design consultant – Traffic Planning and Design – to study Rosedale Road prior to the pedestrian fatality last summer.