LAKE PLACID - Village board members understand residents' concerns about Ironman traffic, but they can't do much about it besides advise locals to be patient.
Village Mayor Craig Randall said at a Monday village board meeting that he got a request via Facebook from a Greenwood Street resident. The person noted that it's difficult for anyone who lives on that street to get onto Saranac Avenue when traffic picks up for the annual Ironman triathlon, set for Sunday.
The resident asked if it would be possible to put up a temporary traffic light, like the one that was installed last year at the corner of Wesvalley Road and Saranac Avenue when construction closed Old Military Road. If that's not possible, the resident asked for a police flagger to be stationed at the intersection for the weekend.
Randall said at the board meeting that the village doesn't have jurisdiction over the traffic light. The detour light was installed by the state Department of Transportation, and he called the likelihood that the DOT would approve a temporary light for this weekend "slim to none."
The village doesn't have sufficient personnel to station a police flagger at that intersection, Randall said. The whole village police force is on duty this weekend, along with help from nearby law enforcement, he said.
Randall said he sympathizes with people about traffic concerns, but he suggested the best thing to do is be patient and plan plenty of time to get from place to place.
"I guess the heavy traffic is something that comes with the event," Randall said.
Village Attorney Janet Bliss suggested people ride their bicycles if they want to get somewhere quickly.
Trustee Jason Leon said board members understand because they have to deal with the same traffic issues as other community members.