Today’s post comes from someone who moved to Westport in the mid-1960s. The writer prefers anonymity. “My reward will come when traffic improves,” the author says.
There are many great things about Westport, like its public school system, Compo Beach and Longshore. These are great because the town spends much time and money on them.
Unfortunately, one area that affects more people than any other: the Post Road.
It is used every day by everyone who lives, works or travels through Westport. Traffic gets worse each year, as more cars and trucks are on the road. They get bigger and park anywhere they like, blocking entire lanes. Yet no effort is made to remedy the situation.
The worst congestion is downtown, at the intersection of Main Street. This problem is caused primarily by private cars using a public road for free parking. In order to conveniece 20 or so people and perhaps a dozen commercial establishments, we permit them to inconvenience 20,000 or more people a day.
We can help this situation with a few simple changes. First, there should be no parking on either side of the Post Road, from one end of town to the other.
Synchronizing the traffic light on both sides of the downtown bridge would also help. Eliminating left turns on the Post Road (except at turning lanes with lights) should be considered. Restricting large delivery trucks from the center of town to nighttime delivery hours would help.
I can hear town government people protesting, “Route 1 is a state road. We have no control over it. We are helpless.” Demand help from the state. Don’t we have representatives in Hartford? Don’t we vote? Don’t we pay state taxes?
Others will say, having 2 unobstructed lanes through town will cause more speeders and accidents. Have you not heard of overhead cameras that mail speeders $150 tickets?
Revitalization of downtown Westport is unlikely without solving our traffic problems.