By Sue Ellen Woodcock
The Town Council succumbed to the voices in the Center Business District and voted to partially open Hagman Road on Oct. 1.
Freshman Councilor Peter Christopher, representing Precinct 5, asked for the town to modify the current pilot traffic study going on in the center. This would include making Hagman Road one-way going out of the center with parking allowed on the left-side. The Hagman Road parking lot is also to be opened, maintain and widen the sidewalk on Hagman Road.
Hagman Road opened further discussion about the pilot traffic study. Changing the direction of Adams Street has not gone over well with residents.
â€œWe hear your concerns, and weâ€™re trying to make adjustments,â€ Council President Russ Sanford said.
Councilor Rich Boyajian asked why the town is still looking at the direction of Adams Street.
â€œWeâ€™ve not seen in real time what we have with Adams Street. If it doesnâ€™t work weâ€™ll make an adjustment,â€ Sanford said.
Sanford explained they want to put the barriers on Hagman Road just past the parking lot about even with Citizens Bank.
â€œWe want to open up but we still want to see if the pilot study can add some green space to French Square,â€ Sanford said. â€œAll weâ€™re trying to do now is eleviate the traffic exiting French Square.â€
Councilor James Letterie asked if Citizens Bank could go back to its original drive-thru direction.
Delehanty said they would have to look at the situation.
School Committee member Ron Vecchia said the study and changes are having a negative impact on the Center. He suggested leaving Adams Street alone and noted that years ago it was a two-way street.
â€œReally take a look at forgetting to change it,â€ Vecchia said.
â€œThe economic vitality of our businesses is important,â€ said Betsy Shane, head of the Winthrop Chamber of Commerce.
Martin Vasquez, owner of La Siesta, noted that business and sales are down.