Category: Ford Cliff

Memberships Open for renewed Ford City Business Association

Ford City Borough Planning Commission Member Tim Wakefield talks to board of directors of the new Ford City Area Business and Professional Association Wednesday while they stuff envelopes with membership applications.

Ford City Borough Planning Commission Member Tim Wakefield talks to board of directors of the new Ford City Area Business and Professional Association Wednesday while they stuff envelopes with membership applications.

by Jonathan Weaver

More than 100 Ford City, Ford Cliff and Manor Township businesses will receive an application in the mail before Christmas to join the new local business association.

Yesterday, seven local business owners stuffed envelopes to invite local organizations to join the Ford City Area Business and Professional Association.

Association President Lindsey Bothell – operations manager at CBJ Medical – credited Borough Planning Commission Member Richard Wakefield with wanting to revive the defunct organization.

“Three or four months ago, (S&T Bank Branch Manager Rosie Lendyak) and I were talking and I said ‘I need to get in front of a group that represents a business.’ We needed a group to focus on some of the issues in this town and to give us their input,” Wakefield said.

More than two dozen business owners did in fact show an interest in renewing the group during an informational session at the Latin American Club August 31. Armstrong County Department of Economic Development Assistant Business Manager Justin Nolder also attended.

Bothell expected the organization to be formalized by the end of January.

“We’re in the early stages right now, but hopefully at the beginning of next year, we’ll have a formal organization with members and we can start making plans and other organizations that want our help or input can request it,” Bothell said.

Current topics for discussion include rezoning the riverfront property, downtown parking and formulating a long-range strategic plan “to draw a path forward.”

“All of those things, we are actively working on at the Planning Commission and are anxiously waiting to get this group organized so we can get their input and go back to Council with official recommendations,” Wakefield added.

Some of the other board of directors so far include representatives from Wolfe Insurance, Klingensmith’s Drug Stores, Mantini Funeral Home, State Farm and the Ford City Pizzeria.

An August 1995 online document shows that a borough comprehensive plan was developed to guide future growth/preservation activities in the 21st Century.

Issues discussed in that comprehensive plan also tackled issues such as the lack of parking, redevelopment of the former PPG site and reuse of vacant structures.

At that time, Business Association leaders thought that in order to facilitate any proposed plans, it would take a unified effort by elected officials, downtown business owners and local residents, among out civic groups and organizations.

Local officials recall the former business association as “a very vibrant group” involved in community activities.

New Fire Zones Approved in North Buffalo

East Franklin Township Fire Chief Mark Feeney (standing) has been working on new

East Franklin Township Fire Chief Mark Feeney (standing) has been working on new “zones” for volunteer departments that respond into North Buffalo Township for a few months, and supervisors approved of the new map last night.

by Jonathan Weaver

Volunteer fire companies that service North Buffalo Township will have designated zones to protect, possibly as soon as this weekend.

East Franklin Township Fire Chief Mark Feeney proposed working on re-drawing the zones after a July non-reportable accident along the Judge Graff Bridge attracted emergency crews from six neighboring departments.

Chief Feeney said most homeowners are now in designated zones so that “first-alarm” fire companies from Applewold Borough, East Franklin Township, Kittanning Hose Company #1, Ford City, Ford Cliff, West Kittanning, and Worthington-West Franklin fire departments are within five miles of their property.

However, some residents could live as far as six miles away from a fire station. North Buffalo Township is approximately 25-miles.

“Everything’s done – we did several revisions on it,” Chief Feeney said. “We had a couple changes we had to make to realign some things for the insurance company.”

Chief Feeney said fire personnel from the volunteer departments also have the responsibility of maintaining updated paperwork for passable insurance ratings.

“The lines are a reference, but it’s not a dead-straight line,” Chief Feeney said. “We’re not cutting a house in half. There’s a lot of work identifying each residence in that zone.”

He explained at least four fire departments will respond to a house fire and at least two departments will jointly cover emergencies such as gas leaks, vehicle accidents and brush fires.

After an executive session with fire department personnel, supervisors David Wolfe, Clark Whiteman and Paul Kirkwood adopted the designated zone map unanimously at their monthly meeting last night and thanked fire department personnel for their diligence.

“They’ve done a great job for the township,” Wolfe said.

Fire departments responded to a pair of emergency calls in the township during the past month.

Supervisor Chair Wolfe and Chief Feeney are to review the plan with Armstrong 9-1-1 emergency dispatchers in Rayburn Township as soon as later this week.

Also, Chief Feeney was unanimously named North Buffalo Fire Marshal.

Supervisors are also to discuss maintaining a fire engine at the township building to enable quicker response if possible.