Whitehall’s police department has reinstated a throwback beat on the force, designed to encourage conversation and instill a sense of confidence, safety and security in township neighborhoods.
Police Chief Michael Marks, who has initiated several state-of-the-art advancements in his tenure, said an “experimental” foot patrol was incorporated for the summer. The results of that patrol could determine its future in the department.
A proposal for Eagle View Townes, a housing development at MacArthur Road and Route 329, Egypt, was aired at the Aug. 22 meeting of Whitehall Township Planning Commission.
Jeffrey Strauss, of Elysium Acquisitions LLC, Allentown, proposes to build 35 townhouses, one set of twin homes and a single-family residence on a vacant tract on the east side of Route 145. The property is in an R5A zoning district, which allows for high-density residential without apartments.
Whitehall Township Public Works Department is the first-place recipient in Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT) Build a Better Mousetrap Contest for a project that prevents contaminating stormwater runoff.
“As the first-place winner, Whitehall Township’s invention will be entered in a regional competition with winners from Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia, as well as in the national Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP),” PennDOT noted.
Coplay Road, which links Cementon to Coplay, has frustrated motorists for years because of its rough condition. In fact, motorists are speaking out more than ever since the closing of the Coplay-Northampton Bridge and the roadway’s use as a detour.
Good news: The road is on Whitehall Township’s radar for a much-needed makeover, according to Mayor Edward D. Hozza Jr.
Hozza informed The Press Aug. 10 that the 2018 budget, which will be submitted to the board of commissioners for review and approval in the fall, will include repairs to Coplay Road.
St. Elizabeth Regional School, Pershing Boulevard, Fullerton, begins its 2017-18 school year Aug. 28, coinciding with Whitehall-Coplay School District’s opening of its schools on the campus off Mechanicsville Road.
Principal Linda Schiller said St. Elizabeth’s enrollment stands at 180 girls and boys, kindergarten through eighth grade, a bit higher than the past school year.
Registration for enrollment continues.
Nine full-time teachers and four part-time teachers comprise the staff.
The town hall meeting for the proposed Hokendauqua historic preservation district, set for 6:30 p.m. Sept. 27 at the Teamsters Union Hall Local 773, 3614 Lehigh St., drew a protest at the board of commissioners meeting Monday by Commissioner Linda Snyder, on grounds the session should instead be held at the municipal complex.
“It should be here. All township meetings should be in this building,” Snyder said.
The final service at Trinity United Church of Christ, Coplay, Aug. 6 had the congregation in the pews for two hours, much longer than usual.
Emotions swept over the families present. Men and women clung to every Scripture read and each hymn sung. They were in no hurry to leave, realizing it was the final chapter in the church’s 146 years of serving its members and the community.
On leaving the church for the final time, there were many teary-eyed persons; voices crackling were met with warm embraces on the realization Trinity UCC has closed its doors forever.
Residents in one of Hokendauqua’s oldest neighborhoods will be able to express their views next month on the possibility of establishing a historic preservation district in part of the village.
The Whitehall Township Board of Commissioners will hold a public forum 6:30 p.m. Sept. 27.
Township Commissioner Jeffrey Dutt, during the board’s Monday workshop meeting, said the informational meeting will be held at the Teamsters Union Hall Local 773, 3614 Lehigh St.
The section of Ironton Rail Trail that runs underneath the Coplay-Northampton Bridge, which is set for demolition and a new span built, will now require some minor modification.
Though the trail will not be shut down, Bob Abbott, former IRT Oversight Commission chairman and present board director, said a section will be moved 20 feet west from the closed pier to the trail. Abbott was unable to provide a timeline for the trail will be moved, as it depends on the status of the work going on at the time by the contractor.
Whitehall Township officials continue to prefer the proposed emergency services building to be located on grounds by Arlington Cemetery, but time is running out for the prized spot.
According to Mayor Edward D. Hozza Jr., the Trevose-based company that owns the land the township wants to secure for the project was sent a certified letter giving the company until Aug. 15 to respond on whether further talks regarding the acquisition will be held.
“We have not heard back from them,” Hozza said.
What happens if that deadline passes?
“We go to plan B,” Hozza replied.