EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Haverhill

November 18, 2012

South Central change foes anger former councilor

David Hall accused ex-mates of "grandstanding" and said it's too late to stop plans to make road one way

HAVERHILL — A former city councilor is criticizing his old colleagues for trying to force the state to change its plan for South Central Street in Bradford’s Central Square long after the decision has been made to limit traffic on the roadway to one direction.

David Hall, who was knocked off the council after finishing eleventh in the last election, accused his former mates of “grandstanding” on the issue. He said councilors opposed to the state’s plan to make South Central one way should have spoken out against it a long time ago when it might have done some good.

All nine councilors recently voted to oppose the state’s plan to restrict traffic on a 250-foot stretch of South Central to one direction, leading away from the busy square. The intersection of South Central and South Main Street was recently rebuilt to accommodate the new traffic flow and a traffic light next summer.

Councilors began opposing the plan this past summer after several business owners and people who live in the area told them they want South Central to remain two ways.

”The state told us what they planned to do years ago, and no one on the council opposed it then,” said Hall, a retired city police officer who said he is considering running for council again next year. “Now all of a sudden these people who never opened their mouth when it could have made a difference are trying to stop the state from doing it. Well it’s too late now. All they are doing is grandstanding and it’s not right.”

Hall was especially critical of Councilor William Macek, who has led the fight to keep South Central open in both directions.

Hall claims he and Macek attended a meeting two years ago at which the state explained its plans for the Route 125 improvement project, which includes the work in Central Square and the change to South Central Street. Hall said the state meeting was in a community room at the Presidential Gardens housing development in Bradford.

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