Jun 23, 2015

Allentown's Sad Excuse On It's Park Neglect

Allentown's managing director, Francis Dougherty, told the Morning Call that
"This is not an issue of neglect by this administration, the structures have been neglected for decades."
Mr. Dougherty is wrong on both accounts. Both the Daddona and Heydt Administrations responded to my requests for stone pointing on the WPA structures, and it is very much a case of neglect by the Pawlowski Administration. The city has also conceded that it knew that the Parkway wall needed work for at least the last six years. All of this is the good news. The wall was not simply a barrier for the road, rather it was a retaining wall, holding the road up. The wall was constructed when the road was cut down the side of the Little Lehigh ravine, and supports the roadway. I doubt if the roadway can be reopened before the wall is rebuilt. However, the consequences of the neglect and wall failure get even worse. When Don Cunningham was Lehigh County Executive, rather than properly replace the metal bridge by the police academy, he used a pedestrian only bridge. This means that vehicles cannot reach most of the park from the 24th Street entrance. With numerous runs and events still scheduled this summer, participants will have to enter on the narrow twisty single lane road off Vultee Street. Last summer, the traffic was routed several times on the path to Lehigh Parkway North, near Regency Tower. This is not a proper roadway, but rather just a macadamed bridle path, which goes very close to the 1858 historic triple lime kiln. Hopefully, Pawlowski will not further endanger that sensitive area with vehicles.

panoramic photograph from 1936 shows construction of wall and roadway

12 comments:

Bill said...

What this Administration has allowed to occur in the degradation of our park system is shameful

Anonymous said...

So if the parks have been neglected for years as the city's executive assistance publically admits, how has this city qualified for and provided evidence of adhering to the rules and regulations of the federal park grants it has received? Has the city deceived the Feds? If only a graduate student can jump on this investigation, a possible Pulitzer!

Anonymous said...

MM,
I see you did not publish my comment last night after Ramos¿ This iconic artdeco gothic structures bestowed upon the local powers that be have been neglected for this administrattion for it entire tenure¿ The wildlands conservancy coincides with this one bad overlay with another¿ There is a more sinister agenda with these facts that now make the Hole rest of the walls structual integrity in question and saftey to the public very questionable to say the least¿

Will you be reporting this week on the tainted water and the facts that are hidden to the publics water as well as bottled water sould that the repartiiSIN weed growth hides¿ This picture that depicts toilet tissue along the rightaway next to the drinking water will be a real eye opener on the reel agenda behind this reprehencible enginerred destruction to all park gifts by uncle Harry for the publics use for enjoyment of the lasting beauty of the parks¿

redd
patent pending

Anonymous said...

Although I don't agree with everything you write about, on the obvious neglect of the WPA/Parkway you always have been right on. The Administration may not agree, but it is obvious that even in this circumstance, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".

Anonymous said...

Will you be putting forth your solution for the WPA structures today? I think the sooner its out there for discussion the sooner people can get behind it Toth to force City Hall into action.

Anonymous said...

Our magnificent parks are literally falling apart.

Anonymous said...

Politicians sometimes need to be publicly embarrassed into action. This could become one of those times if enough voices participate.

Fred Windish

Anonymous said...

The T Trust must be livid. Say what you will about them, and they certainly have made mistakes, but they love the Park.

michael molovinsky said...

@2:21, as an advocate for the traditional park system, i beg to differ with you. their lead man was motivated to redo the rose gardens, named after his grandfather, but my pleas for the greater park have fallen on deaf ears. the trust did grant 25k for the wpa, providing it was met by a matching grant, which it wasn't. frankly, there isn't anybody who has been advocating for the parks, especially the wpa, as much as me. karen el-chaar, director of friends of the parks, has also been an advocate. but she must walk a line between the city and establishment, including the wildlands conservancy. i answer to no one, except the iconic traditional park system.




Anonymous said...

The mayors people blame the 'past' neglect for the crumbling wall? And just how long has King Ed be mayor? It's like Obama still blaming for America's current troubles. Let's face it, Pawlowski is all about 'his' constituents: the sainted lower class, and the newly sainted NIZers. The rest of the city's residents, the backbone who actually live in Allentown, have their gems ignored. Whether public pools, parks or streets the city decays while Ed fiddles. Maybe we should refer to him as Nerolowski?

clyde taurus said...

hope this ends that stupid "lights in the parkway" joke

Anonymous said...

Anonymous clyde taurus said...
hope this ends that stupid "lights in the parkway" joke

June 23, 2015 at 9:26 PM

It won't. If they have to they'll install more electricity in that park, cut down more trees, harm more wildlife, cause more havoc.