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Lewes, Delaware
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June 19, 1998     Cape Gazette
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June 19, 1998
 

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12 - CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, June 19 - June 25, 1998 New sidewalks, trees, fights, paving eyed for Lewes' Second Street By Dennis Forney Second Street, the main busi- ness street in Lewes, would look dramatically different under a plan presented Monday, June 15, by a Towson, Md.-based land- scape architect. In a public workshop meeting hosted by Lewes's Parks and Recreation Commission, Bill Kir- wan of Wm. F. Kirwan Inc. laid out a plan which would involve a complete makeover of Second Street from the storefronts on one side of the street to the storefronts on the other side. Existing side- walks, street, trees and light fix- tures would be replaced to create a more quaint atmosphere. The makeover would include: Brick sidewalks dry-laid (close, without grout) in a herring- bone pattern to replace the exist- ing concrete sidewalks. Twelve-foot cast iron or alu- minum Victorian-style light fix- tures with ornamental glass globes to replace the existing 24-foot "cobra-head" street lights. (Kir- wan said the lights spaced along both sides of the street would be illuminated with 100-watt metal halide bulbs that produce a pleas- ing, pure-white light.) More than one dozen "island bumpouts" that extend semi-cir- cles into the street at a number of locations on both sides of the street for placement of trees and benches. Replacement of the existing Bradford pear trees, which have dwindled in number from 17 to 10, with either honey locusts or zelkovas, a popUlar street tree in Japanese cities. "The honey lo- cust has small leaves and light tends to filter through," said Kir- wan. The zelkovas - which line the median strips in Dewey Beach - are also a popular street tree, ac- cording to Kirwan. Ten-foot-wide pedestrian crossovers of a nonslip concrete paver at a number of locations. Kirwan said the crossovers would be a different color than the side- walk or asphalt street so that dri- vers would understand that they are for pedestrians and so pedes- trians would know that they are of a different nature than the side- Letters (302) 571-6488 Continued from page 8 cated they were planning to in- clude conference room space in the motel. They further indicated this conference area would not be used during the prime tourist sea- son, but after the "season" was over. Upon questioning, they esti- mated that four rental units could be built in the proposed confer- ence area. I submit that reasonable people possible to "downsize" the motel to more acceptable dimensions if the developers can afford the iux= ury of foregoing revenue from four potential rental units during walks. Concrete, bowl-type planters along the length Of the street to give some consistency to the plantings put out now by a variety of merchants. Benches and trash receptacles placed strategically. Kirwan said the plan also in- cludes at least three handicapped parking spaces and access points. The only problem we have is find- ing a place for bicycles. We're still working on that." Kirwan said the project would cost well over $1 million to com- plete. "We're talking about tear- ing everything out from storefront to storefront," said Kirwan. "That's a big effort. Charles O'Donnell, an engineer with the firm of George, Miles and Buhr, which designs upgrades for the city's streets, said the pro- ject would probably require eight months for completion. "The main part of the project, between Savannah Road and Market Street, would probably require six months," said O'Donnell. The work, he said, would have to be done between March and October. ?It can't be done in the winter," said O'Donneli. Kirwan also noted that the plan would probably include 6-inch curbs to provide for the best stormwater management and safe- ty for those on the sidewalks. Al- though the project would extend the full length of Second Street, the residential end of the street - beyond Mulberry - would not in- clude the island bumpouts and some of the other features planned for the main business area. Members of Lewes Council pre- sent at the meeting noted lhat there aren't funds presently awail- able to do the project. Coumcil- man Jud Bennett said the city al- ready has plans for $750,000 to $1 million worth of street improve- ments in other areas of town. Alvin and Rose Mary Harper, who live on the residential enid of Second Street, gasped when lthey heard the price tag for the projject. "Who's going to pay for aill of that," said Alvin Harper. '"We don't want our taxes to go up."' Mayor George Smith said this the entire busy tourist season. Per- haps that thought crossed the judge's mind as well when he made his ruling. Fifth, since the city is commit- ted to presenting the corrected new zoning plan at the August council meeting, it would seem best that it be approved and imple- mented before this, or any other project, proceeds further. After that is done, then this mo- tel developer, along with other in- terested parties, could be invited to submit building plans that ,con- form to the codes in the new zon- ,iwpdr. , we #ae waited ,%e years to get to this point, why not wait a couple more months and do it right? Allen Ide Lewes week he plans to start looking for funds that may be available through other sources to fund whatever project is settled on for Second Street. "It will probably be a couple of years before we can do anything but I want to start ex- ploring sources now. There may be some grant money or some state money through the bond bill committee. I also plan to talk to a couple of senators but I want to get a better cost estimate before I do that." Mary Vessels, chairman of the Parks and Recreation Commis- sion, said the commission and the town will review the proposal. "Then we'll get back to the engi- neers," said Vessels. Bill Kirwan, a landscape architect, discusses the glass globes that would go atop Victorian-style lampposts on Sec- ond Street. pmmm SATURDAY, JULY 4, 1998 AT EAGLE CREST AERODROME, ROUTE I Oust outside Lewes. DE). General Admission tickets; $25. Gates open at 4:30 p.m. Show starts at T:30 p.m. Ord tickm with a credit card by calling WO-,.Y. Or, visit any of the following ticket locations (cash sales only): Dover Downs Guest Services * Douer. DE Rehoboth Beach Chamber of Commerce r Rehoboth Beach, DE Beach Plum Nursery, Route I -* North o[Lewes. DE Beebe Medical Center * Lewes. DE Lion Tours Kiosk * 94th Street Mall. Ocean City. MD Burdette-Tornlin Memorial Hospital r Cape May Court Hous NJ Delaware Memorial Bridge Information Center Cape May and Lewes Ferry Terminals Proceeds of this event to benefit Beeb Medical Center, Lewes, Delaware. and Burdette- Tomlin Memorial Hospital, Cape May Court House. NewJersey. No refunds, rainchecks or exchanges. Event will take place rain or shine. No food, drink, cameras or audio equipment allowed. Sponsored by:. FI00TUSA HUDSONHo00ms Ticket price includes a $25 donation to the Parseghian Medical Research Foundation @