The new Oceanside Costco slated to open on July 27 will modify the three-way intersection of Lawson and Daly boulevards in response to traffic concerns, according to The Nassau County Department of Public Works, responding to Herald inquiries. Costco will foot the bill and select a contractor for the project.
The traffic impact study submitted by Costco identified several measures to mitigate any adverse conditions caused by additional traffic related to Costco, Harold Lutz, county director of traffic engineering, wrote in an email. They include the marking of exclusive left and right turn lanes on Daly Boulevard while preserving a through traffic lane in both directions. A left turn signal will be placed for drivers turning onto Lawson from Daly, and a lane on Lawson will be marked for drivers turning right onto Daly.
County Legislator Denise Ford, who spoke to the Herald by phone, said that residents had expressed both concern and excitement about the new Costco, and that the county will be closely monitoring the traffic situation once the store opens. “If there are any adjustments that need to be made, we will make them,” she said, adding that she requested a county police detail be posted there in the days after the store’s opening.
Additionally, she explained that residents should anticipate an unusually large volume of traffic shortly after Costco opens, but that it should normalize over time. She admitted, however, that between the intersection project and the Barnum Island Bridge construction, “We’re all going a little gray over there.”
Maria Heller, a former Oceanside Chamber of Commerce president, has been critical of the current traffic situation on Lawson. She noted that during the 8 a.m. rush hour, trailer trucks backing into their warehouse spots tie up the entire street, causing delays and that, “in the morning, 10 minutes means a lot to people.”
For its part, Costco has agreed to have truck deliveries scheduled during off-hours, according to Lutz.
Answering a Herald social media request for resident statements about the Costco, Kim Moran wrote by email that, as a mother living in Oceanside, she is excited at the prospect of a location opening nearby. She added, however, that she hopes the additional traffic on Lawson is not as bad as some anticipate and that the store provides job opportunities for local families.
Additionally, responding to the same request through Facebook, four residents expressed excitement about the store, four were against the opening citing traffic and local business concerns and two expressed excitement but were worried about traffic.
Heller, who acknowledged that traffic is a fact of life, noted that the situation on Lawson just needs some regulation. She explained, “You can’t stop traffic but you have to control it.”