If you have ever waited through the traffic signal at Morris and Elm streets or—God forbid—got your tractor trailer stuck under the train overpass there, we have some potentially good news.
Work is presently underway by the county to reallign the intersection, which will result in new crosswalks, Americans with Disabillities Act-approved ramps, push button signal changers and motion-sensor traffic signals.
"The main purpose for the improvements is pedestrian safety," said Debbie Dellagiacoma, assistant engineer for Morris County.
The project is costing about $300,000, $150,000 of which is being borne by Morristown under a previous agreement with the county for the project. That actually is about $71,000 less than what the town had pledged to contribute toward the project, said Business Administrator Michael Rogers.
"At the time, the town approved $221,000 [to contribute,]" he said. "When it went out to bid it was lower."
In addition, the right-turn radius onto Elm Street from Morris Street is being improved, to allow tractor trailers another option should their rig be too big to drive under the NJ Transit overpass, Dellagiacoma said. Also, she said a traffic signal on an Elm Street island—which has often been prone to accidents—is being completely removed.
The only small downside to the project is the strip mall where Hennessey's is located will lose three parking spaces as a result of the change. But, Dellagiacoma said, "it's a lot of little improvements and hopefully everyone will appreciate it when it's done."
A left turn arrow from Morris onto Elm also is not part of the plan, Dellagiacoma said, as the intersection is too narrow to facilitate such an addition.
The project is expected to be complete at the end of November.