Editorial: After all this time, still no shelter from the storm

It’s a welcome sight to see a new traffic light being installed at the Route 48 and Depot Lane intersection where four women were killed in July.

It’s a long overdue safety measure that should help prevent another tragedy from occurring at the historically problematic intersection, and the push by county officials to complete the project so quickly after the crash is also encouraging.

Maybe now the county can work with the same sense of urgency on completing another stalled North Fork project: the installation of six new bus shelters along Main Road.

Seven months have passed since Suffolk County Legislator Al Krupski submitted a formal request to build the shelters, yet not one has been constructed to date.

Even this past winter, our local public officials were expressing concern over how long it was taking.

“This has been discussed at our transportation commission for the past five to eight years and has run into so many bureaucratic snags, it’s been embarrassing,” Southold Town Police Chief Martin Flatley said back in January.

It was disheartening to hear Greenport High School senior Thomas Spackman say in last week’s Suffolk Times that “it kind of makes you feel that small government or even government in general is just broken.”

He and several other North Fork high school students have been working on “Project Bus Stop” for three years. We often hear people lament that our youth don’t take an active interest in civic endeavors. Maybe this is why.

It’s disappointing that these students, about whom we’ve written several times in recent years, will all soon graduate from high school without seeing their community service project come to fruition. It’s shameful that another autumn is here — with winter already on the horizon — and the men and women who rely on the very limited public transportation our county provides still have no protections from the elements.

Is it a tragedy? No. But it shouldn’t take a tragedy for our government to simply do its job.