CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ)- A recent fatality, along with many other motor-pedestrian accidents has sparked the need for safety improvements to an intersection in the heart of Bellefonte.
Dating back to the early 1800’s the diamond sits in front of the Centre County Courthouse. It’s a mix of parking spots, crosswalks and busy traffic going in different directions.
Borough Manager Ralph Stewart says it can easily be confusing to navigate around for both people on foot, and behind the wheel if they’re not paying close attention.
“The pedestrian accident fatality involved someone getting out of a parking space and crossing the street and these spaces that are blocked off are those exact spaces where the accident happened,” said Stewart.
To prevent any more tragedies, Stewart says they’re looking into both short and long term changes.
“Anything from stop signs to changing the location of the crosswalks to eliminating some parking spaces to a complete re-design,” listed Stewart.
As for the most prominent idea, a roundabout.
“Most people have at least seen or gone through one and a roundabout is believed to slow traffic down and increase safety, so it’s all on the table,” said Stewart.
So far, parking spaces in the Diamond have been temporarily blocked off. Later this month, Stewart says plastic curbing will be added as a placeholder until they can decide on a more permanent change.
“We would like to see zero accidents in the future so that is our main goal,” said Stewart.
Before any major re-design takes place, Stewart says they’ll hold a public hearing sometime in September to get the community’s take on it first.
“We understand the Diamond has been here for years and years so hearing from the community is very important to us,” said Stewart.
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