August 21, 2014

Public Tells Bikeways Committee of Road Cycling Hazards

Several members of the public described the hazards of cycling in the town from personal experience at the Special Meeting of the Old Saybrook Bikeways Committee.

During the first of two Special Meetings of the ad hoc Old Saybrook Bikeways Committee on Thursday evening, members of the public listed problem areas of which they were aware that cause hazards and impact the safety of cyclists and pedestrians on town roads. 

About 20 residents turned out for the meeting, which was chaired by Kathy Connolly, who gave a short presentation on the history of the committee before seeking input from the members of the public on specific cycling and pedestrian hazards they had encountered on and around the roadways of Old Saybrook.

The Bikeways Committee, which was formed in September 2008 by the Old Saybrook Board of Selectmen, is developing a list of recommended infrastructure changes and other investments that will require funding from the 2011-12 budget, which it will then take to the board of selectmen later in the year.

Committee member Julie D’Ambrosio described a survey she is conducting with members of Girl Scout troops to collect traffic, pedestrian and cyclist data at the middle school as part of the “Safe Routes to School” project.  Connolly hopes that funding for infrastructure improvements may be available through a grant from the program.  The Town of Essex has already received a $400,000 grant for physical improvements and Clinton is reportedly working on a similar grant application.

Several members of the public provided personal examples of dangerous situations they had experienced while cycling locally.  One of the most hazardous areas identified was The Causeway between Saybrook Point and Fenwick, which several residents reported as being particularly dangerous for cyclists.

Great Hammock Road, Elm Street under the Amtrak bridge, and Route 1 over the railway bridge between CVS and Pat’s Kountry Kitchen were also identified as areas of concern.  Proposed solutions included widening roadways where possible, changing road markings and reducing speed limits.

Connolly noted all comments and will incorporate them into her recommendations to the board of selectmen.

A second special public meeting will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 20, at the Town Hall.

Fundraiser Sunday Benefits Old Saybrook Mom with Cancer

 

Lisa Kiako of Old Saybrook, with her 11-year-old-daughter Tiffany

A Family Fun Day fundraiser will be held rain or shine next Sunday, Aug. 15, from 12 to 4 p.m. at Clark Memorial Field (at Exit 67 off I 95, opposite Pasta Vita) to benefit Lisa Kiako of Old Saybrook, pictured left with her 11-year-old-daughter Tiffany. 

Kiako is the 43-year-old single mother of Tiffany, who she co-parents with her former husband and best friend, Jim Kiako – a member of the Old Saybrook Police Dept. 

Lisa has been diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma and Amyloidosis – two different types of cancer.

Lisa will be leaving for Little Rock, Ark., the day after the fundraiser to have her second stem cell transplant from her own stem cells.  She is an ultrasound technician at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital, but due to her illness, she is no longer able to work.  Lisa has no sick or vacation days remaining.

To add to her stress and financial burden, her basement was flooded when she was in Arkansas during her previous treatment and she lost everything in the finished basement.

There will be food, fun and entertainment at the fundraiser. 

Tickets (suggested donation is $10 for adults and $5 for children aged 12 and under) are available from the Ultrasound Department at L & M Hospital or by calling 860-908-3858, 860-388-4271, or 860 388-7818.

For more information, email Gail Koos Antoniac at gail79@aol.com