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Crosswalk Beacon Likely Coming to Trail in Sylvan Lake

Pedestrian crosswalk beacon in Sylvan Lake chosen to promote safety and save money for Clinton River Trail users.

The Sylvan Lake City Council voted unanimously last week in support of building a pedestrian crosswalk beacon at the Clinton River Trail intersection with Orchard Lake Road.

Those familiar with the roundabout at Maple and Drake roads in West Bloomfield Township should remember the HAWK, or High-intensity Activated cross-WalKtraffic, as it is called by the Road Commission for Oakland County, as an alternative to adding a new traffic signal and safety island.

Due to in part to cost of such a project, city manager John Martin said Wednesday night, the HAWK project became the favorite to aid a crossing near Mike Larco's Ala Carte and Decks N Docks, which can prove difficult in traffic.

"We talked about it a lot to make sure it's a safe, viable alternative," said Martin of discussions with the Road Commission for Oakland County, which operates the road. "It's almost half of the cost (of a traditional traffic light) and in my humble opinion, it's a safer alternative."

The project's cost of about $100,000 stands up well next to the cost of the safety island project, estimated at $193,000 according to Martin. Tri-Party funds, shared between Oakland County, the Road Commission and Sylvan Lake, are approved to be used on the project.

Sylvan Lake's share is expected to be furnished by a grant from UPS, via the Friends of the Clinton River Trail nonprofit organization, although some details concerning the grant were pending. The city will pay the cost of ongoing maintenence and operation, estimated at $2,000 annually.

The trail begins from the West Bloomfield Trail at Sylvan Manor Park and cuts through the southern portion of Sylvan Lake in a southwest-northeast direction on its way to Pontiac. For information on HAWK lights, visit the Road Commission's website at rcocweb.org (PDF).

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