Bollards, Lights Festival Prompt Questions
Archbold Village Council talked about the cost of the Festival of Lights, and the N. Defiance St.-Stryker St. intersection, at the May 4 meeting.
Council members talked about refining current estimates of what the Archbold Park Board and the Village of Archbold spend to put up the annual Christmas Festival of Lights in Ruihley Park.
Kevin Morton, councilman and council liaison to the park board, said it's estimated the board spends $10,000 for electricity for the festival, plus another $3,000 in manpower to put up and maintain the displays.
Morton said village street department workers are also involved in the project.
Dennis Howell, Archbold village administrator, said the cost of the Festival "evolved." Originally, Toledo Edison subsidized a large part of the electric bill, but cut back its support as the economy tightened.
Morton said the park board is "in no way suggesting that we do away" with the Festival of Lights, but said better cost figures are needed to review the project.
As the park board reviews the cost of the festival, Morton said the public should understand what the board pays for.
Howell said a big Christmas lights display in West Virginia put out donation buckets to help defray the cost.
"This is a generous community. We might be able to defray some of the cost," he said.
Councilmen discussed the Thursday, April 23, mishap at the intersection of N. Defi- ance St. and Stryker St., when a semi rig struck a street light pole on the northwest corner of the intersection, which also carries traffic signals. The truck ripped the bell bollard out of the ground, ruined a lighted bollard, and damaged part of the sidewalk.
About five days later, another semi struck the street light pole on the southwest corner of the intersection. The trailer had to be removed from the bell bollard with a heavy-duty wrecker.
Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor, said he was approached by a downtown merchant who asked what could be done at the intersection. The merchant suggested removing the bollards, or converting the Stryker St. left and right turn lanes into one lane.
Jeff Fryman, councilman, said the village had already widened the intersection- how much more could they give?
Kevin Eicher, councilman, said one of the permanent solutions is to get trucks headed for ConAgra off N. Defiance St., and onto Co. Rd. 24.
It was suggested parking spaces along Stryker St. be eliminated to give more room. That was decided to be impractical.
"I'd hate to give up parking spaces," Wyse said.
Howell said Ohio law specifi- cally states local government entities "bear no responsibility" to make roadways accessible to 53-foot-long semi trailers.
Fryman said he was concerned that a truck turning too sharply could injure or kill a pedestrian at the intersection.
"I'm in favor of the (bell) bollards, he said.
Brad Grime, councilman, said in 2005, when N. Defiance St. was rebuilt and remodeled, he suggested purchasing portions of the Red Cross Drug Store and the Rupp Furniture annex, and then removing parts of them to widen the intersection.
He said he was ignored at the time- but now, the idea does not seem so out of place.
But Howell said when remodeling old buildings, costs can go out of sight, "because you don't know what you're getting into," he said.
No action was taken on either issue.