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Council approves sidewalk project

December 19, 2002|by RICHARD BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - The Waynesboro Borough Council Wednesday ended months of controversy when it gave its approval for a 1-mile pedestrian walkway that will link Waynesboro Mall with Wayne Heights Mall.

The vote was 4-2 with Council President Douglas Tengler and Councilman Clint Barkdoll casting dissenting votes.

The action paves the way for a joint venture between the borough and Washington Township for the sidewalk. It will begin at Waynesboro Mall and run east past the YMCA through Renfrew Park and Museum and end at Welty Road in Washington Township.

Money for the walkway, about $325,000, was secured by State Sen. Terry Punt, R-Franklin, who threatened to pull the grants in October when the borough and Renfrew failed to come to an agreement on several issues.

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Renfrew officials gave it their blessings last week when they learned that the route through the park would not be intrusive, that any trees destroyed during construction would be replaced and that the museum would not be held legally liable in lawsuits stemming from accidents on the walkway.

The council had delayed making a decision on the walkway, which also delayed any movement on the project.

There was considerable discussion Wednesday about where the sidewalk should begin. Barkdoll and Mayor Louis Barlup wanted it to start on Second Street where it meets Pa. 16 but they couldn't get the votes to support their arguments.

Councilman Allen Porter said he had observed the stretch of roadway numerous times in recent months and saw the dangers that pedestrians face from automotive traffic when they have to walk along the edge of the busy road.

"It's a mistake to start it at Second Street," he said.

Porter made the motion to run it mall to mall with a second by Councilman John Cook.

Borough Manager Lloyd Hamberger said Washington Township officials plan to ask the borough for an easement through Renfrew, which the borough owns, to maintain the walkway once it's built.

When that will be was anyone's guess on the council last night.

Hamberger said the project will have to stand up to environmental and safety reviews by Pennsylvania Department of Transportation engineers before construction can begin.

He also cautioned the council not to change its mind about the route of the walkway once the vote was taken.

"We don't want to go back and change our minds," he said.

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