The influential civic group also
wants now to keep the controversial intersection at Augustine
Cut-off the way it is and to eliminate plans to run a secondary
'local-service' road through the proposed park and open space.
doesn't make any sense to acquire all that parkland and then
have it chopped up with roads," said Daniel Bockover, president
of the council. "There is no reason we have to have cars and
trucks driving through the meadow."
the organization's executive committee took the stance at its
closed-door April meeting. It was not disclosed at the most
recent public meeting of the full membership, but has been
communicated to Delaware Department of Transportation in
anticipation of a scheduled workshop-style public hearing on the
Blue Ball road plan on May 22. That session will run from 4
until 8 p.m. in the cafeteria at Brandywine High School.
Lavelle, Brandywine Council's land use chairman, said, however,
that the executive committee did not actually endorse the plan,
but "approved presenting [it] to the state and the community for
consideration." He added that, while "Dan's plan does have its
merits, ... not all of us are sure that the plan decided upon by
the public advisory group should be scrapped [because] that
would be a contentious and difficult proposal." Bockover said he
stood by his previous statement that his proposal had been
Web site, Brandywine Council has asked viewers to use the
hearing as an opportunity to "take one more look" at the Blue
Ball road network plans.
Bockover said Brandywine Council
supports the desire of Delaware Greenways and its executive
director, Gail Van Gilder, to have a simple underpass to enable
pedestrian and bicyclists to cross Concord Pike. That original
proposal grew as
Council said this kind of interchange makes more
sense than ...
design DelDOT has come up with for the Blue Ball
officials pushed for an interchange to handle 'regional' traffic
and mate Concord Pike with a new spur road coming downhill from
Powder Mill Road. 'Local' traffic would be shunted to a
separate road connecting Augustine Cut-off and Foulk and
such a road through the Greenway tunnel would require making it
much higher and wider than would be required for walkers and
bikers, Bockover said.
full cloverleaf-style interchange at Concord Pike and Foulk
Road, the auxiliary road would not be necessary, hesaid. No
matter what it is called, he added, it would invite drivers to
transverse the park. "They can put up all the signs they want,
but speed limits won't mean anything. It'll just be a way for
[drivers] to get from Point A to Point B," Bockover said, adding
that that will pose a safety hazard to children and other park
he previously suggested to DelDOT officials that they conduct a
demonstration off-season opening of the road through Bellevue
State Park, which can be made to connect Philadelphia Pike and
Carr Road, to through traffic "to see what will happen" with a
somewhat comparable arrangement at Blue Ball. "They don't want
to hear that," he said.
that he has personally supported constructing a full interchange
at Concord Pike and Foulk Road on the assumption that retaining
the present intersection would not provide sufficient capacity
when the Astra Zeneca headquarters expansion is completed. It
generally is agreed that that corporate project provided the
impetus for the planned road network.
offered a 'choice' between a full and a partial interchange to
the advisory committee which studied the Blue Ball project. The
partial one -- which came to be called a 'diamond' in the
department's publicity material -- was chosen as the preferable
said Brandywine Council commissioned an engineering drawing of
its proposed cloverleaf -- which it is calling a
"citizens' compact interchange" -- to illustrate that such an
arrangement could be placed there without taking as much
parkland and open space as the supposedly limited DelDOT design.
Because the turns would necessarily be tighter than cloverleaves
on limited-access thruways, it would not be a high-speed one, he
explained. Traffic lights in the DelDOT design would similarly
limit speeds, he added.
the point, he said, the design would be nowhere near as complex
as the road labyrinth DelDOT favors.
never been able to get them to really evaluate a full
interchange. That is why I insisted on [their] having a
3-d(imensional) model made," Bockover said. The model is to be
displayed at the public hearing. "When people try to trace the
route with their fingers, they get lost. What's going to happen
when they get out on the road?" he quipped.
said retaining the present Concord Pike-Augustine Cut-off
intersection poses no great concern. The traffic signal there,
he said, is about equidistant to the south of Foulk Road as the
signal at the entrance of Independence Mall, which DelDOT
proposes to keep in operation, is to the north.
DelDOT's original plan to close the
Concord Pike-Augustine Cut-off intersection turned out to be the
most controversial issue in the original consideration of the
Blue Ball plan. Resolution of the controversy held up former
Governor Thomas Carper's approval of the plan for several
months. The eventual decision was to retain a partial
intersection where right turns would be allowed without a