February 29, 2012 - The idea of building a safety path along Rochester Rd. in Addison Township is still open for discussion.
According to Addison Twp. Board Trustee John Boehmer, the Road Commission for Oakland County (RCOC) did not include space for a safety path along Rochester Rd. from Drahner Rd. to Leonard in their recent submission of drawings for the repaving of Rochester Rd.
But Boehmer noted the road commission was "still looking into that."
"I myself was hoping to see those incorporated into those drawings and tried to persuade them to do so because I think that is a pretty important attribute," Boehmer said.
There were initial discussions between the RCOC and Addison officials about the possibility of constructing a 4-foot or 5-foot wide paved space on one side of the road for people to walk or ride their bikes.
Boehmer said there had been "good discussion between a township official and a county official on how to maybe make things work best."
He added talks would still be ongoing between Addison Twp. Supervisor Bruce Pearson and the OCRC.
"It is basically trying to create a stronger dialogue right now to do whatever we can collectively to get it incorporated into the plan," Boehmer said. "Maybe it isn't the complete pathways...from a standpoint of being paved."
According to Boehmer, it would make the most sense for the RCOC to put in the pathway when they repave Rochester Rd., so they wouldn't have to come back a second time and cut back hillsides.
Public safety was Boehmer's number one issue.
"In Addison Township, there has been an increase in road traffic over the years, and there is really not a good alternate for people to get around," he said. "Cars are allowed to go around at 50 miles an hour on uposted dirt roads. So having an area where people can walk their dogs, ride their bikes, use their wheelchair...is ideal."
Included in the Addison Township Parks, Recreation and Open Space Master Plan is a non-motorized pathway that would extend around the entire township.
The circular path would go north along Rochester Rd. to the Polly Ann Trail, down the Polly Ann Trail to Lake George Rd. and follow Lake George Rd. down to Drahner.
The path would then extend from Drahner Rd. to Rochester Rd. and all the way up to Leonard.
An additional path is proposed along Lakeville Rd.
Boehmer said this would only effect the Rochester Rd. portion of the proposed non-motorized path.
Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.