Burd Street will no longer be closed to traffic when trick-or-treaters dressed in elaborate costumes come to the Pennington neighborhood for Halloween.
In 2021, the Pennington Council had closed the street along with surrounding streets to improve safety for those participating in Halloween festivities.
“If Council remembers, the reason we did shut down Burd Street is because it was, at that time, a highly and densely traffic area on Halloween and we thought it would improve safety of participants there,” Council President Catherine Chandler said during a discussion at a council meeting on Oct. 3.
Chandler noted that the Council did not realize it would increase trick-or treating in the area.
“Our desire was not necessarily to increase the trick-or-treating, but to increase the safety,” she said.
The decision by Council also applies to the surrounding street road closures in the neighborhood of Burd Street that were closed by the Pennington Police Department to improve safety.
Chandler, Councilwoman Kati Angarone, Councilwoman Deborah Gnatt, Councilwoman Nadine Stern and Councilman Ken Gross voted to discontinue the borough’s practice of closing Burd Street.
“I believe we can (still) keep (trick-or-treaters) safe,” Angarone said of not closing the street.
Councilman Charles Marciante abstained from the vote.
“You have so many side streets coming off of Burd Street, you have to put a cop on every corner. I think the compromise is to move [the street closures] every year and give everyone a chance,” he said. “I will abstain, because I believe we should do it in another location.”
Previous road closures included Burd Street, West Welling Avenue, Lanning Avenue, Hale Street, Reading Street, Voorhees Avenue and Sked Street.
To help with the road closures the police department would get reinforcement from sheriff officers, according to Mayor Jim Davy.
And despite the decision to not close the street, Davy said the police department will “continue to provide increased police presence in the area in order to slow down traffic and make it safer for kids to trick-or-treat.”
Borough officials will release communications on the change to the public prior to Halloween.