E-town plans park upgrades
nThe improvements planned for Community Park will be paid for with a quarter-million-dollar grant received last fall from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. BY CHAD UMBLE, Staff Writer
A quarter-of-a-million-dollar state grant will create a western entrance for Elizabethtown Borough's Community Park while adding a paved pathway to a growing system of walking and biking routes in town.
The improvements in Community Park will be paid for with a grant received last fall from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
The project will include the construction of a formal entrance to the park near College and Cherry avenues. The entrance will delineate the western approach to the linear park, which follows the creek west as it widens toward the baseball field at South Mount Joy Street.
While the new park entrance has not yet be designed, Roni Ryan, the borough's manager, said it could include an arch or similar feature.
The parking lot near the new entrance will also be upgraded, and sand volleyball courts are also planned for the area.
Along the creek -- an unnamed tributary of Conoy Creek -- the new macadam pathway will be installed through the middle of the park.
Ryan said borough officials are now working to secure agreements with DCNR. Those agreements need to be finalized before official plans can be made and a bid for the project can be awarded. She said the borough is hopeful that everything can be completed this year, but said a more exact timeline is difficult to set.
The paved pathway along the creek dovetails with the second phase of a separate pedestrian pathway that will ultimately enable walkers and bikers to travel from the Amtrak station on the western edge of town, through the downtown, and then to Elizabethtown Area High School on the eastern side.
That pathway now goes from the train station to the downtown. The section from downtown out to the high school also is slated to be completed this year.
The two pathways will come together near Ken Lane and the park's baseball field.
Ryan said the pathway projects will create new links in the borough.
"We're trying to hit all the key connecting points," she said.
The borough first considered the pathways as part of the Master Plan for Downtown Elizabethtown that was unveiled in 2005.
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