Borough officials are learning at the eleventh hour that Franklin Avenue residents facing may possibly prefer the view of the green turf and athletic activity over a masked view which plans for a new fence would create.
Jean Lindquist, who resides on Franklin Avenue at the corner of Field Avenue, presented the mayor and council Tuesday with a petition made up of eight signatures from Franklin Avenue residents claiming they do not want to lose their view of the field as a result of the screened fence set to be put in place this spring.
The news came as a shock to borough officials who said they made the decision to go with this particular fencing because residents on Franklin had strongly expressed to them that they did not want a view of the field.
The is designed to mostly mask the view of the field but will allow some visibility for security purposes, as per request by the borough’s police chief. Currently there is a chained-link fence at the site which provides a full view of the field.
Mayor Rose Heck said the officials have heard complaints from more than one resident on Franklin concerning the view of the field and discussion has gone on for quite some time as officials have been working with residents to resolve this problem. Other ideas for a resolution had been discussed and the screened fence has since been determined the best solution, she explained.
If those same residents have since changed their mind about the view, the borough must investigate further before making any kind of decision to change plans, the mayor stressed.
Lindquist told the governing body she had conversations with all the residents on Franklin whose homes face the field and all supported the petition in favor of keeping the view. No one had made mention to her of previously being opposed to the view, she claimed.
She suggested instead of a screen fence the black iron fencing which is on the Oldfield Avenue side of field be put up. Heck agreed that it would look better as she herself would prefer to see the field however they have been working to please other residents' complaints.
Officials said they will obtain a photo of what the new fencing will look like and will arrange an onsite meeting with residents so they can discuss the plans with all once again and move ahead from there.
A lot of work has gone into the project already and according to Borough Administrator Mike Kronyak, the borough engineer is currently completing the specs for the project which would soon be followed by the bidding process.
It could cost taxpayers money to change their mind this late in the game, said the mayor.