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Council OKs 2 weekly cruise nights, sensors to synchronize traffic lights

The Common Council on Tuesday night approved two weekly cruise nights along the water this summer devoted to showing off old "classic" cars, trucks and motorcycles.

The Council also agreed on a plan to install sensors at five intersections so traffic lights will stop traffic on busy streets only when cars are waiting on side streets.

After the meeting, Alderman Eric Zadzilka said he was pleased with both measures.

New cruise nights on Mondays on Webster Street near the Erie Canal and Wednesdays at Gratwick Park along the Niagara River will encourage people to come hang out and have fun in the city.

"I think it's just a good way to keep people realizing, you don't have to live on the water to enjoy it," Zadzilka said.

The Canalside Creamery ice cream shop on Webster proposed the Monday cruise nights, planned from May to September. Webster, from Goundry to Tremont streets, would be closed from 6 to 9 p.m.

During the same months, a larger cruise night will be held on Wednesdays at Gratwick Park and managed by promoter Kathy Paradowski. As president of Special Vending in Wilson, she will pay $1,000 rent with an option to renew for another three years.

The Council also approved an arrangement to spend a state grant of about $250,000 to install electronic triggers, embedded in the asphalt, so that cars won't be stopped at traffic lights on Nash Road and Meadow Drive unless a car is waiting on a side street.

"Right now we stop cars for no reason," City Engineer Dale Marshall said. "It's going to be much more efficient than it used to be."

Sensors, to be put in during the coming weeks, will save gas because cars will wait less and engines will idle less. "They're going to be able to go from point A to point B a little less frustrated," said Bradley Rowles, superintendent of public works.

The intersections set to get new sensors are:

* Nash and Ruie Road.

* Nash and Deerfield Drive.

* Nash and Wurlitzer Drive.

* Meadow and Bowen Drive.

* Meadow and Kinkead Avenue.