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Sidewalk oppostion growing

May 16, 2002|BY RICHARD F. BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Officials in Waynesboro and Washington Township can expect some flak over a plan to build a sidewalk linking the borough with the township along the south side of East Main Street, according to one property owner whose home is on the route.

Raymond and Brenda Adkins of 800 E. Main St., the first property to be affected if the walkway is built, said they and their neighbors plan to fight the proposal.

The Waynesboro Borough Council agreed Wednesday night to meet with Washington Township officials and the affected property owners soon to hear from the property owners.

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"We met with the township last fall and have heard nothing since," Raymond Adkins said. "We all thought it was a dead issue."

The sidewalk would run east on the south side of East Main Street for two-thirds of a mile from the Waynesboro Mall to Welty Road then to Wayne Heights Mall.

Money to build it, about $325,000, has been authorized. State Sen. Terry Punt, R-Waynesboro, secured a $60,000 state grant, and the Franklin County Planning Commission got the lion's share with a $265,000 federal grant.

Rights of way would have to be secured from five homeowners, an Allegheny Power facility, the Waynesboro YMCA, Waynesboro Area School District and Renfrew Museum and Park.

The Adkins say they are worried about maintenance of the sidewalk.

"We already get too much trash dropped on our property," Raymond Adkins said.

The proposed route would take the walkway more than 200 feet behind the trees bordering the road at Renfrew. A pedestrian bridge would be built over the East Branch of Antietam Creek, which runs through the park.

Renfrew executive board members, in a letter read to the council Wednesday night, said they agree with the concept, but think a better route is across East Main Street on the north side.

They said the walkway would "permanently alter the physical landscape of the area it is designed to service."

They want the walkway placed as close to East Main Street as possible, want to be free of any legal liability, and want a say in the lighting and in any changes to the driveway into the museum.

Dick Marks, executive director of the YMCA, said earlier that he prefers a route along East Second Street behind the facility. That would avoid cutting across the front lawns of the five private homeowners.

Proponents said the sidewalk would provide a safe passage for pedestrians walking from the borough sidewalk system to the YMCA, the schools, Renfrew, the Wayne Heights Mall and the Wayne Heights residential areas.

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