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Borough to ask for help on walks

July 16, 2009|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- Waynesboro business owners and residents, especially those living on Main Street, soon will be asked to make donations for brick sidewalks being installed on Main Street from Walnut Street to Cleveland Avenue.

Retired state Sen. Terry Punt secured $500,000 in grants for the project, but the borough encountered several problems. Many of those problems affect the work's price tag, including:

  • In most cases, building owners own 3 to 4 feet of sidewalk against their structures. The borough right of way does not extend to buildings.

  • Property owners must sign releases allowing their portions of the sidewalks to be replaced.

  • Some property owners were willing to pay for the bricks; others weren't. Concerns began to develop about a "patchwork" of concrete and brick.

  • If the borough paid for all the bricks, including those on private property, the $500,000 grant would only cover from Walnut Street to Potomac Street. The project was originally supposed to encompass Broad Street to Grant Street.

    The council on Wednesday accepted comments from 10 people, the majority of whom were in favor of replacing the entire sidewalk with bricks. After extensive discussion, council members scaled back the work to include full bricks from Walnut Street to Cleveland Avenue -- a move that might cost $25,000 beyond the grant.

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Nonprofit organization Main Street Waynesboro Inc. was put in charge of approaching property owners for signatures on releases. Those volunteers also will ask whether the property owner is willing to make a donation to cover the overrun.

A fund is being set up to accept donations to someday install bricks from Cleveland Avenue to the original boundary of Grant Street.

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