This ‘n that from the Gadfly clipping file

From the clipping file:

This article caught Gadfly’s eye. We are studying the feasibility of a pedestrian bridge to connect the Greenway, Saucon Trail, D&L Trails. Such things often need to be justified  through economic benefit. Here is some evidence.

Anthony Salamone, “Saucon Rail Trail helped Lehigh Valley businesses; they want to return the favor, give people more walking trails, green spaces.” Morning Call, September 3, 2019.

After officials opened portions of the Saucon Rail Trail along Water Street Park in 2011, Hellertown business owner Steve LaBrake noticed changes. Some were expected: His Saucon Valley Bikes store on Main Street saw a 30% increase in sales during the year after the trail opened, and business has remained healthy since, he said.

He also began noticing people were buying baskets for his bikes so they could patronize the borough farmers market, and that restaurants and other local retail merchants were also reaping benefits.

“It’s cool to see what the rail trail has done for the community,” LaBrake said.


Payrow Plaza

WLVT photo

Are you getting tired of hearing Gadfly talking about his reading the Jeff Speck books on walkability. Forsooth, they were a source of many ideas. He was using an old RCN bill envelope as a page marker, jotting down ideas. Speck at one point asked about unused or little used pedestrian spaces that could enhance walkability and street “life.” Gadfly jotted Payrow Plaza. And here we have wonderful use of what Kristen Weinrich saw as “underutilized” space.

Now “Playrow” Plaza.

Can you think of other areas?

Stephen Jiwanmall, “Playrow Plaza: A New Space for Bethlehem Kids.” WLVT, August 27, 2019.

(our follower) Dana Grubb, “Payrow Plaza plots place to play.” Bethlehem Press, September 4, 2019.

The city of Bethlehem has introduced a new play area for children at the city center. It is located on Payrow Plaza between the stairs and south wall and was installed Aug. 27. Health director Kristen Wenrich said the location was underutilized and that the play area, which is stenciled onto the existing paver surface, will provide an activity and learning circuit. Wenrich and chronic disease director Sherri Penchishen led a team of city employees in first laying out the design and then painting the stencil- based activity stations. According to Penchishen, the $6,000 project, which is funded using chronic disease grant, has been in the works for several years.

2 thoughts on “This ‘n that from the Gadfly clipping file

  1. This is so great! That dead space has always made me feel sad and hopeless (except at holiday time) when I get to the library and Town Hall. Hooray for the Health Dept!

  2. Agree wholeheartedly – this space has been embarrassing and depressing, and certainly not reflective of our City. I’m so proud to see what it has been transformed into! Kudos to all involved!

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