Southampton Village Hall got word this week that the village will receive a big chunk of federal cash to fund pedestrian safety improvements on North Sea and Hampton roads.
The $498,374 grant comes from the Safe Routes to School program, which is designed to "encourage children, including those with disabilities, to walk and bicycle to school and to make walking and bicycling to school safe and appealing," according to the New York State Department of Transportation.
The plan will also make driving on Hampton Road easier for motorists, as the road striping will be reconfigured to provide a straight path, rather than having to change lanes to continue down the road without turning. It will also preserve the shoulder for cyclists.
The federal government will cover 100 percent of the cost, said village grant writer Jennifer Mesiano Higham — so Southampton Village does not have to put up any matching funds.
At the intersection of North Sea Road and Hillcrest Avenue, a new traffic light will be installed and crosswalks with countdown timers for pedestrians will be put in at the west, north and east crossings, with Americans with Disabilities Act compliant handicap ramps.
At the Hampton Road and Old Town Road intersection, accessible ramps will be added to existing sidewalks, crosswalks will be installed at all four crossings, and additional pedestrian signals will be added, along with countdown timers. The road striping will be reconfigured to remove the westside right turn lane and to center the left turn lane.
For Hampton Road's intersection with David Whites Lane, crosswalks will be put in at all four crossings with pedestrian timers, and a new traffic signal with technology for sensing vehicles will be installed.
At both the Old Town Road and David Whites Lane intersections, currently, there are only walk/don't walk signs at the Hampton Road crossings, and there are no countdown timers in place.
For the Narrow Lane intersection, a crosswalk will be installed from Potato Field Lane to Narrow Lane, where Southampton High School is located. The Hampton Road pedestrian crossing will be moved to the west side of the intersection, and a countdown timers will be installed.
Higham said the village has an estimated 24-month project timeline, but that is subject to change.
During summer 2012 under a past Safe Routes to School Grant, work was completed on Pine Street, where Southampton Elementary School is located. Pine Street got a new traffic pattern, becoming a one-way street for stretch.