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Club gets permission to start building park

June 18, 2005|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - It took more than 30 years, but work now can begin to turn a vacant, borough-owned field into a new recreation park near Wayne Gardens.

This week, the Waynesboro Borough Council, following a recommendation by the Borough Planning Commission, gave permission for the Waynesboro Rotary Club to begin construction of the park.

The club plans to raise and spend up to $180,000 to begin the project, which will be built in phases.

The borough has owned the land, bordered by Park and Eighth streets and Anthony and Fairview avenues, since the 1970s. The reason for buying the property was to provide the borough with another park, but those plans stayed shelved until the Rotary picked up the ball.

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It's the same vacant field that became a center of controversy three years ago, when the Stallions youth football team wanted to turn it into a playing field and concession stand. Opposition by residents in the Wayne Gardens neighborhood were a major factor in the project's defeat.

Those neighbors favor the Rotary Club's project.

Rotary International is asking local clubs to launch important community projects as part of the international organization's centennial celebration. The Waynesboro club took on the park as its project.

Jim Rock, president of GRC General Contractors in Zullinger, Pa., is chairing the park project for the Rotary. He could not be reached for comment Friday.

One of the Rotary's first jobs this summer will be the start of construction on a mile-long walkway around the perimeter of the new park.

Also, the club plans to build a 20-foot-by-40-foot pavilion, restrooms, parking areas, a few benches, the start of a playground and some initial landscaping.

Projects planned for the future include construction of volleyball and tennis courts, horseshoe pits, more playground equipment and additional pavilions.

The 83-member Waynesboro Rotary Club celebrates its 85th anniversary this year.

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