Discussions on whether or not to pave part of the old Scioto Valley Traction Line right of way in Groveport for student pedestrian use have been put on hold.
At Groveport Village Council’s Aug. 18 committee of the whole meeting, Mike Beck, Groveport Madison Local Schools’ director of facilities, maintenance, and pupil programs, said the district is still working on its bus transportation routes and has not yet decided if the school bus routes for the Tallman Road area, for students attending Glendening Elementary and Groveport Middle School South who live within a mile of the schools, would be eliminated.
"I’m not convinced we’ll save a bus route (overall) if we do this," said Beck.
Earlier in August, Groveport Madison officials approached village officials about paving about 850 feet of the former traction line right of way path from Hendron Road east to a point where it meets an existing paved path that leads to Glendening Elementary and Groveport Middle School South for students to use if their bus routes were eliminated.
(Note: The traction line was an electric rail system that once passed through Groveport in the early 20th century. The old right of way in the area in question is just south of the Hendron Road apartments and extends past the rear of some west Main Street homes, businesses, and the former pharmacy.)
Interim Groveport Village Administrator Ken Salak estimated it would cost around $15,000 to pave the gravel and cinder path with asphalt. He said the school district and village could split the cost.
Beck said the proposed paved path would be strictly a walkway and would not be a bus stop or a place where parents drop off or pick up children. He said the idea to pave the path was floated because it was a better route for student pedestrians to reach the schools if their bus route was eliminated. He said the alternative of having students walk up Hendron Road to Glendening Drive was rejected because there are no sidewalks on Hendron Road.
Dennis Agler, who owns business property on west Main Street, said, "Children being children, they won’t go to a specific spot. What assurances do we have they won’t meander over properties (to reach the path)? The fact that they’ll cut through needs addressed."
Speaking for another west Main Street business, Bill Lewis, said the proposal to direct students down the path raises safety issues.
"Why send them down a path where they’re out of sight?" Lewis asked.
Lewis also raised concerns parents would use the business’ parking lot as a place to drop off and pick up kids.
Council and the school district made no decision about paving the path as the issue is still being reviewed.
"We’ll make sure you will be informed before a decision is made," Councilwoman Donna Drury told the concerned residents.
Added Councilman Ed Dildine, "Make sure you address your concerns with the school district. We (council) don’t have a final say on their transportation issues."
Other Groveport news
• William Ferrell of TNT Enterprises of Ohio LLC, which is applying for a liquor permit for the former Groveport Lounge at 296 Main St., told council he plans to turn the site into a sports bar that would also offer sandwiches and pizza, pool leagues, and some live music and/or a DJ and Karaoke.
"I want to run a clean operation," said Ferrell. "A place where people can relax and have a good time…"
•Groveport Police Chief Gary York reported that he met with architects to go over final estimates for the potential construction of a new police station for the village. He said a representative from Horne & King Architects will make a presentation on the matter at council’s Oct. 20 committee of the whole meeting.