Tree Limb Pickup Progressing, Northern Part Of Township To Be Done First

Township Manager Robert Vornlocker told the council that public works crews have so far picked up 4,500 cubic yards of tree limbs and branches in 1,300 truckloads.

The bulk of the township’s limb pickup program should be done by May 7, with the northern section of Franklin completed first.

Streets south of the Claremont Road area will be done after that for logistical reasons, Township Manager Robert Vornlocker said at the April 24 Township Council meeting.

Vornlocker said after the meeting that pickups are being done using the 14 zones designated for snow removal. He said the streets within those zones are being picked randomly, as is the order of the zones chosen, so that there is no appearance of favoritism.

The part of the township north of the Claremont Road area is being done first so the drum chipping equipment doesn’t have to be moved all around town, he said. The decision was made to do the section of Franklin south of the Claremont Road area last because that’s where the farm that is taking most of the chipped material is located.

Township officials decided to pick up limbs residents gather from their yards as a result of the major limb and tree loss caused by the last two large snowstorms of the season. The limbs must be cut to no longer than four feet long and must be left along curb lines.

It won’t be until after all the other residential streets are finished that township public works crews will turn their attention to Easton Avenue and Amwell Road/Hamilton Street, Vornlocker said.

There are currently four crews out daily and Saturday picking up the limbs, two with large dump trucks and two with chippers, chipping the limbs as they are picked up, Vornlocker said.

Easton and Amwell “require a different type of operation where there are four lanes and the need to shut down lanes will require all of the crews that are working through the neighborhoods to work together to get those done in a more expeditious fashion,” Vornlocker said. “There’s a lot of traffic concerns as you do work on those zones.”

As of April 24, township public works crews picked up 4,500 cubic yards of limbs and branches, Vornlocker said, which translates to about 121,500 cubic feet of material.

“That’s a lot,” he said. “That’s over 1,300 truckloads to date. That’s a lot of debris.”

“That’s why I always say it with a tone in my voice, please be patient,” Vornlocker said. “It is a lot.We recognize that you may have branches in front of your house. There are about 240 linear miles of roadway in Franklin Township that those crews have to make their way down to pick up that debris from house to house. It takes time.”


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