Kittanning Councilman David Croyle was shocked to find South Jefferson Street closed to traffic yesterday.
“There were no notices; no one came around and said ‘By the way, we have to close the street for a few hours’,” he told Senate Engineer Bill Braun.
The closure began at approximately 7AM and continued into the afternoon, essentially shutting off access to businesses along South Jefferson from Jacob Street to Market Street.
Braun said that a meeting held in the Armstrong County Planning and Development Office just 24 hours earlier on Tuesday, Contractor M&B Services was told they could not shut the street completely down. According to Braun, one lane of travel was to remain open throughout the day. M&B Services told Braun in an email that the street was closed because they felt it was safer for their men and the public and that the road was only closed for a “short period of time.”
Croyle requested that the “Road Closed” signs be moved to the north side of the municipal parking lot to allow for traffic to enter South Jefferson and exit through the parking lot and alley onto either Jacob or Market Streets. The signs were moved shortly after 11AM.
Croyle said he called Police Chief Bruce Mathews as well as Street Supervisor Jim Mechling about the closure. Both said that they had no prior knowledge about it until an early morning phone call from the contractor stating they were closing the road.
Mechling, who also attended the Tuesday morning meeting, said the discussion was centered around bagging parking meters on one side of the highway to allow for one lane of traffic.
Braun, in an email to Croyle, said M&B Services intends to close the road again today “for a few hours”, although the notification did not give a specific time frame.
Tune to WTYM AM 1380 for more information on the road closure throughout the day. Croyle will also discuss it this morning on the station’s Morning Show at 10AM. The station is also available on computer at wtymradio.com or via mobile devices by downloading the WTYM radio app.