Some residents are worried that Bowdoin College’s plan to build a road connecting Pine Street to Bath Road will lead to increased traffic and congestion.

The proposal from Bowdoin, as part of its Whittier Whittier Field Athletic Complex improvement plan, calls for discontinuation of a portion of Pine Street. The project’s focus shifted to the Pine Street side of the field after neighbors on Bowker Street requested that a 9,000-square-foot athletic support facility not be constructed on their side of the field.

If the road is discontinued, a public access road paid for by the college would be built. The college has also agreed to maintain a pedestrian and bicycle path.

Bowker Street resident Mark Battle, speaking during a town council meeting on Monday, said the street is too narrow for increased traffic and cited concerns about how additional traffic may impact young families living in the area.

Two civil engineers, one hired by Bowdoin College and another hired by the town, reached the same conclusion: That traffic would not increase as a result if a public connector road is built.

If the project is approved by the council, the task of approving the design and other elements of the new road project would be the planning board’s responsibility.

Bowdoin College Treasurer Matt Orlando said the portion of Pine Street proposed to be discontinued is not a safe road as it is now, and it doesn’t have sidewalks. He said the college wants to protect the character of the neighborhood, adding he has been speaking with neighbors about the proposal since March.

The council, by state law, cannot vote on the matter for at least 10 business days. The next date the council can issue a decision is Monday, Dec. 18. Additional public comment on the proposal can be submitted to the council during that time.

The council will meet again Monday, Dec. 4.

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