When a 78-year-old woman walking in Andover was hit and killed by a car on April 27, it was only the latest in a series of horrific car-versus-pedestrian crashes on Elm Street.
Deputy Town Manager Michael A. Lindstrom told the Andover Select Board at it’s meeting Monday the town is working to finish improvements on Elm Street that will hopefully make those crashes a thing of the past. The town is installing flashing pedestrian beacons similar to the ones on the campus of Phillips Academy at the intersections of Elm and Whittier and Elm and Walnut Streets.
Other changes include curb “bump outs” at crosswalks, which will not only give pedestrians a better view before crossing the street but serve as a “visual pinch point” for drivers, Lindstrom said. Lindstrom stressed the bump outs will only extend to the edge of the parking lanes, and the drivable width of the road will remain 24 feet across.
“We’re just asking people to be patient,” Lindstrom said. “Those are the safety improvements the neighborhood wanted.”
Special Town Meeting Updates
The board voted to change the date of the special town meeting it called last week to Dec. 1 from Nov. 30. The meeting, which was called to address budget overruns at the West Elementary School building project, will start at 7 p.m. at the Collins Center for the Performing Arts at Andover High School.
The town will have a “quad-board” meeting on Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. at Memorial Hall Library to discuss the special town meeting warrant. The quad-board is made up of the select board, school committee, finance committee and West Elementary School building committee.
Mark Your Calendar
The select board approved the 2023 election and town meeting calendar. Key dates are listed below:
- Oct. 22: Town Meeting warrant opens
- Jan. 20: Town Meeting warrant closes
- Feb. 3: Budget due
- March 14: Election warrant posted and published
- March 18: Deadline to register to vote in Andover election
- March 21: Annual Town Report due
- March 28: Town Election
- April 17: Town Meeting warrant posted and published
- April 21: Finance Committee Report due
- April 21: Deadline to register to vote to participate in Town Meeting
- May 1-4: Annual Town Meeting
Thinking for running of local office in next year’s Andover election? Note these deadlines:
- Feb. 7: Last day to submit nomination papers
- Feb. 23: Last day to withdraw from town election
In Other Business
Andover Select Board Vice Chair Laura Gregory did not attend Monday’s meeting. In other business at Monday’s meeting, the Andover Select Board:
- continued a public hearing on Verizon’s application to install five small cell wireless towers until Oct. 17. Several neighbors spoke in opposition to the application and the impact the utility poles would have on their home values and neighborhoods.
- set Trick-or-Treating hours in Andover for 5 to 7 p.m. on Oct. 31 this year.
- approved Oak & Iron Brewing Company’s application for a one-day liquor license on town property to operate a beer garden at the Run for the Troops on Nov. 13. The local brewery hosted a similar beer garden on Andover Day on Sept. 24.
- approved a change in managers for the Andover Inn at 4 Chapel Avenue. The new manager of record, as required under the Inn’s liquor license, is James Siano. “First of all, it’s good news the Andover Inn is coming back. That’s good news,” Chair Alex Vispoli said.
- heard but took no action on public comment on the Town Governance Study Committee’s report and recommendations. Former Selectman Richard Howe said he opposed the study’s recommendation to retain Andover’s open town meeting form of government. The comments echoed written opposition he submitted to the board earlier in the day. The select board is in the process of adopting a framework to review and implement the Town Governance Study Committee’s recommendations.
- approved Town Manager Andrew Flanagan’s request to appoint Vanessa French as assistant town clerk at annual salary of $79,547.91 per year. French starts Oct. 12.
More coverage of Monday’s meeting on Andover News:
- Residents Up Pressure On Andover Town Manager
- Former Selectman Opposes Governance Study’s Recommendations On Open Town Meeting