As the town of Warren considers potential locations for a new town garage, we urge residents to remember that if they want the town to cook the meal, they have to let them shop for the groceries.

Like many small towns in Vermont, Warren’s current town garage is sited in the village; its central location is essential to maintain highway department efficiency but also poses safety risks to pedestrians and town employees alike

The question of where to put the new building was revisited by town officials this week; the consensus was, as it has been in the past, that the town’s gravel pit would serve as the ideal location for the town garage.

It’s centrally located, gets the mammoth road equipment out of the village and puts the highway equipment on the other side of Route 100 with the materials—what’s not to like?

The town has come up against resistance from abutting landowners and deed restrictions on the town-owned parcel in the past that have prevented the project from moving forward. Noise pollution was among the many reasons cited.

Meanwhile, back in the village…

The Safe Routes to School committee continues to investigate sidewalk feasibility, crosswalks and radar trailers to calm traffic and slow speeders in the village; parents don’t feel safe letting their kids walk on the heavily traveled Brook Road.

And what parent would? The turning radius on most of the town’s heavy equipment far exceeds the constraints of the tight intersection of Brook Road and School Road. The hill presents a problem for visibility into oncoming traffic.

Even the town’s road foreman admitted that taking that corner in a grader is scary.

Instead of turning Warren’s historic village into a matrix of reflective road stripes, stop signs and speed trailers, wouldn’t it make more sense to get the trucks out instead?

If the daily trucking of sand, salt and gravel through Warren Village were to cease, so too would the risk posed to village residents who so often complain about the noise and traffic disrupting the quiet.

If the taxpayers want to keep the peace and quiet in the village, sacrifices must be made in neighboring backyards.

As the winter approaches and residents expect the same high level of service from their road department, including plowing, sanding, and salting those slick, flood-damaged roads, best you let them shop for the site that best serves the town.