Saratoga County

DOT suggests signs at Malta chip plant

Frustrated town officials will try using more signs to direct people leaving the GlobalFoundries sit

Frustrated town officials will try using more signs to direct people leaving the GlobalFoundries site away from using Hermes Road as a shortcut, since they apparently can’t block the road.

The additional directional signs were recommended by the state Department of Transportation after state police told the town it can’t use a barrier to block public access to Hermes Road.

The additional signs will direct employees and construction workers leaving GlobalFoundries toward the new main entrance to the Luther Forest Technology Campus as a way of encouraging them to use it.

“[DOT officials] said there are great directional signs for getting to GlobalFoundries, but not for when they’re leaving,” Town Supervisor Paul Sausville said.

DOT officials also suggested that the town could install an electronic message sign at the Stonebreak Road-Hermes Road roundabout saying “local traffic only,” but right now, no electronic sign is available.

The issue of GlobalFoundries traffic using Hermes Road to cut through to Dunning Street and then Route 9 reached what town officials consider to be a crisis level last week, when Stonebreak Road was shut down for construction of a new roundabout at Route 9. The new technology campus entrance opened at the same time.

Stonebreak Road had been how most drivers got to GlobalFoundries, but now that it’s closed, many are cutting through on Hermes Road rather than drive two miles farther south to the new technology campus entrance on Route 67.

The Town Board on July 21 declared an emergency authorizing a barrier for Hermes Road. It was erected for a few hours July 28, but it caused traffic backups and the next day a state police lieutenant told Sausville the barrier was illegal.

The growing level of traffic on Hermes Road and Dunning Street has generated complaints from residents of the Luther Forest housing development, who say it creates a safety issue.

“A lot of people are being inconvenienced,” said Town Board member Tara Thomas, who lives in Luther Forest.

An environmental impact study done in 2003, when the technology campus was just a proposal, said general traffic to and from the campus shouldn’t use Hermes Road.

“The expectation of the community is there would be no traffic impact,” said Councilman John Hartzell.

Town Attorney Tom Peterson said he’ll be meeting Thursday with local GlobalFoundries attorney Matt Jones to discuss the situation.

Stonebreak Road, which was built in 2008 specifically to serve GlobalFoundries and the technology campus, will be closed for about three months while the new roundabout is built at Route 9.

Categories: Uncategorized

Leave a Reply