Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Will Someone Turn on the Lights, Please?

Now, don't go getting yourself all in an uproar. I'm just sharing a few more thoughts here.

Traffic lights. We need more, and let me tell you why. There is a US highway, Route 20, four lanes wide in most parts, stretching through our town on its way to the Pacific Ocean, and there are only seven sets of traffic lights on it. At the intersection of Route 49 we need one for obvious reasons, in front of the Hobbs Brook Shopping Plaza, again, for obvious reasons, at the intersection of Route 131, a little further west in front of the Piccadilly Pub for traffic control across the road, in front of OSV, at Cedar Street, and at the intersection of Holland Road and Route 148.

Based on the reasoning one must assume the engineers gave to place lights at these spots, all necessary by the way, one would think that the same reasoning would have been used for where New Boston Road intersects with Route 20, and at Hall Road.

Two men died at the New Boston Road intersection a few years ago. Would a light have prevented the accident? Dunno, but it sure as heck wouldn't have hurt none. Try turning into New Boston Road from the east side of Route 20. It isn't easy is it? And, how about turning into Hall Road when you are westbound on 20?

There are a few other places in town that could use a flashing light, or a complete set of signals, but these two places are tops on the list, especially the New Boston Road intersection.

There. I said it. Traffic lights. I know, it isn't something we want, but we sure as heck need considering how Route 20 is built. I mean, it's four lanes wide! Every intersection should have a set of lights, and throw a set in in front of XtraMart while we're at it, too.

OK. I feel better. It's like gas sometimes. After you burp you feel so much better.


  1. Oh Come ON!! Please pick a name for me, please! Can ya? I'm thinking this will backfire on you because it has an element of fun AND surprise...I live on New Boston Rd. I came upon that accident right after it happened. Living here for 15 years, I've wondered about why there hasn't been more. It's like kamikaze's out there sometimes, especially during flea season. No brainer: state route intersects with connector street = street lights.

    Does anyone know what method is used to determine whether a street light should be installed at an intersection?

  2. Dear Thinking:

    I'm am reporting here that there is correspondence in the "outbox" in the town administrators office, that pertains to a street light at the intersection of Route 20 and New Boston Rd.

    I'm not sure if your article had anything to do with it, perhaps coincidence, but it looks like there is some consideration being given to it....Selectmen didn't know about it, but there's a letter in the outbox.

    The method for consideration of a street light, is this: you write a letter to the town administrator expressing your concerns; he sends a letter to the "street light committee", they investigate, and then....I don't know what, explanation stopped there.

  3. Thanks for the information, Carol. I believe there is some information regarding the process on how to get a traffic light at a particular intersection on line at the Mass Highway site. I will give it look, and get back to you.


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