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Scottdale parks panel eyes ADA standards

| Thursday, July 25, 2013, 12:56 a.m.

The Scottdale Parks Commission on Wednesday named Colleen Kenney chairperson and decided to have her check out Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines for park accessibility.

The decision was made after members discussed creating an opening in fencing at the Pittsburgh Street Park for handicapped individuals at the request of a resident.

“We need to know what width we need to be correct,” commission member William White said.

Kenney said she has the specifications of the park and will look into what is needed in that park and other borough parks as far as ADA standards apply.

A pedestrian crossing sign also was requested for the Pittsburgh Street Park area.

“We need to have some kind of enforcement of those,” commission member Bruce Eberly said.

Pedestrian crossing signs inform motorists they are to stop for people crossing the street.

“I agree that we need one to go there, but they are not enforced,” Eberly said.

The proposed pavilion for the South Chestnut Street Park is still on hold, and requests for a timeframe could not be scheduled.

“We've been ready. All we are waiting on is the permits,” Eberly said of the planned pavilion. “It was previously approved, but I don't know what the drag is on the permits.”

Also, Eberly said he has a group of volunteers willing to help erect the handicapped-accessible playground equipment the borough has for Chestnut Street Park.

Although the street department is slated to do the work, Eberly said the volunteers could do the work if the department is busy.

“When we get organized, we can talk to the street department, and they can come and supervise,” Eberly said. “We need to get that equipment up, and we can save the borough money that can be used to put in the pathways.”

Acting on council's recent resolution deeming borough property “tobacco free,” commission members decided to contact Penn State Extension, which offered to give signs to the borough free of charge.

“The resolution stated no tobacco usage,” said Andy Pinskey, council president and commission liaison. “These can't actually be enforced, but they will be used for education purposes. They are to educate the public and can be used to try to discourage tobacco usage.”

Brad Geyer, president of the Geyer Performing Arts Center, asked commission members if they felt there would be interest in a “theater in the park” event.

Geyer said he could put together shows that would then be performed in Loucks Park in Scottdale.

“I think that is an awesome idea,” Kenney said.

“We are always looking for activities to fill time in the park and different things for the people to do,” Pinskey said. “I think it's a great idea.”

Marilyn Forbes is a contributing writer.

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