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From the Vault: News from the Wednesday, July 25, 1990, edition of the Press & Journal

Posted 7/18/18

Lower Swatara officials address issue of dangerous intersections

In the recent combination “workshop/business” meeting, the Lower Swatara Township Board of Commissioners again addressed …

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From the Vault: News from the Wednesday, July 25, 1990, edition of the Press & Journal


Lower Swatara officials address issue of dangerous intersections

In the recent combination “workshop/business” meeting, the Lower Swatara Township Board of Commissioners again addressed concerns expressed by residents over allegations that several intersections in the township are very dangerous to area motorists.

Residents have called upon commissioners to take steps to help ensure safety at those intersections.

In his report to the board, Earl Condran, public works director for the township, noted the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will be performing work at the intersection of Route 441 and Longview Drive.

“They (PennDOT) will lay the banks back” at the intersection, Condran said.

At the June meeting, township residents had voiced their fears in reference to the alleged lack of visibility at the intersection.

“It’s like playing blind man’s bluff,” said Janet Wells, president of the board, in giving her opinion of the intersection.

Dolores Kelley, a township resident, explained she was acting on behalf of her neighbors in alerting the board to “two road problems.” The first, Nissley Drive to Shope Gardens coming out of Woodridge, was a concern, Kelley said. She suggested placement of a stop sign could help the situation.

Warren “Skip” Guenther, vice president of the board, explained that six months to a year ago, the commissioners discussed that intersection but that not enough traffic traveled the roadway to warrant a stop sign.

Kelley then mentioned the intersection of Fulling Mill Road and Nissley Drive, maintaining that a “hump” or rise in Fulling Mill Road impairs visibility when making a lefthand turn toward the Twelve Oaks Development.

Frank Siffrinn, township manager, said the board would contact PennDOT about the possibility of erecting a “blind intersection sign” at that area.

Another township resident, Sam Oran, informed the board of another intersection.

“It’s dangerous pulling out onto North Union Street from Horseshoe Drive,” Oran maintained.

“On many occasions, we have gotten out in the nick of time.”

Guenther said the board would look into erecting an “intersection ahead” sign in that area.

Royalton borough says ‘no’ to skateboards

Royalton has decided to “just say no” to skateboarding.

Borough Council passed an ordinance May 1 banning skateboards on all public highways, streets, alleys and sidewalks within the borough. Violations of the ordinance could result in as much as a $50 fine and confiscation of the skateboard.

While damage to sidewalks was listed as one reason for the ban, Royalton police officer Ken Whitebread says safety is the main concern.

“They’ve (the skateboarders) created the problem with unsafe riding on streets, especially on Route 441. If they would have stayed in areas that were safe and not habitually rode on 441 and on the Northumberland School property, this wouldn’t have been necessary.”

Whitebread claimed that he has “caught kids skateboarding down Route 441 in the middle of the road and there have been several ‘near hits’ that have been really alarming.” He went on to explain that skateboarders had been given permission to ride in the playground area of the Northumberland School, but the area had reportedly been “trashed.”

He said: “We were planning on letting them there throughout the whole summer but that was ruined by a few bad apples.”

In neighboring Middletown, skateboarders are only banned from the downtown business district. A total ban on skateboards has not yet been considered.

“I don’t think we have that bad of a problem,” said Middletown’s police chief, George Miller. According to Miller, skateboarders from Royalton coming into Middletown “possibly could” create a problem. “We’ll just have to wait and see,” he added.

For the first 30 days the ordinance is in effect, police officers will issue only verbal warnings to skateboarders in violation. The ordinance calls for confiscation of the skateboard for 15 days on the first offense, plus parental notification. A second and subsequent offenses call for a $50 fine and confiscation of the skateboard for 30 days.

Council plans to review the ordinance after six months to determine its effectiveness.

Project at high school moves into high gear

The $7.5 million addition/renovation project at the Middletown Area High School is expected to be at least partially finished by the beginning of the 1990-91 school year, according to Casper Voithofer, the school’s principal.

By Aug. 13, asbestos removal and both parking lots are expected to be finished, all in time for the start of school Sept. 4.

According to Voithofer, “We hope to get most of the things done by August 13 because athletic practices begin, band starts and teachers start coming back for in-service days.”

Other renovations nearing completion include: the storage facility of the industrial arts area, handicap ramps and a public address system.

The kitchen is still in the process of being renovated. All of its electrical circuitry is being rewired.

In the physical education area of the building, the shower and locker rooms, team room and trainers' area have been completely gutted and renovated.

“Appearance wise, it won’t look the way it did before," Voithofer said.

Construction of the Edward E. Brunner Science and Technology Building, the new two-floor wing facing Route 441, is expected to be finished by January 1991. The two floors of new classrooms will include a large group instruction room that seats 105 students, a computer room, physics, chemistry and biology labs and a typing room.

Headlines from the edition

• 16-year-old cited following accident in which 3 were injured

• M-town Scouts retrace trail through Civil War battleground

• Brothers barred from fire department following May brawl

Hot buys

• Free second set of prints with each Kodacolor film developed and printed. Free two-liter of Coke with video rental. Rhoads Pharmacy, 4 S. Union St., Middletown.

• 1989 Dodge Caravan SE, new, loaded, $13,995. 1987 Dodge Colt E, three-door, hatchback, low mileage, $4,595. Behney Motors, Race and Emaus streets, Middletown.

• Thursday special, pepper steak and two vegetables, $4.95. Friday special, batter dipped fish and two vegetables, $5.95. Smitty’s Restaurant, Union and Ann streets, Middletown.