Busy Park to Close Next Summer

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SOUTH ABINGTON TOWNSHIP -- All the warm temperatures to start this week had South Abington park packed with people. In the summer this place near Clarks Summit can be even busier.

In fact, even on this blustery cold day there were people out using the park. Plans to close the park next summer didn't sit well with them.

"I'm going to be very devastated and so is Cleo. Because we walk it every day," said Lucetta Creavy, of South Abington Township.

Creavy said in nice weather she even brings her dog Cleo here twice a day.

But next summer, South Abington Township officials said the park must close because a sewer line will be installed right through it.

That means no playgrounds, no ball fields, no basketball courts.

A walking trail will stay open, but there will be no access from the park.

"I just moved up here three years ago and we love it.  Hate to see it close," said Creavy.

"Unfortunately I just found out that they're going to be closing it for the summer.  I guess they really don't have a choice but unfortunately it's going to affect a lot of people," said Pam Bourbeau, of Lake Winola.

Pam Bourbeau and Nancy Fleming come here from the Lake Winola area all the time.

"It's disappointing cause everyone loves it.  It's something that everyone uses all the time and has a great time doing it," said Fleming.

The township is hoping to work with the Abington Heights school district and run the sewer line right through the back of the elementary school property.  That's why they want to do it in the summer, when the school is out of session.

"As engineering goes, sewer lines have to be built from the bottom up and we're starting at the school district so we have to start in the summer," said David O'Neil, the Township Manager.

Township Manager O'Neil said he knows the summer is bad timing, but he said the route through the park and school property will save taxpayer money.

He said while the park is closed, improvements will be done there too.

"That's the message we want to get out. Yes, it will be better.  If someone has an idea that they would like over there, now is the time to contact the township," said O'Neil.

South Abington Township officials said this new sewer line is expected to last 125 to 150 years and save the township millions over its lifetime.

The park is expected to close June first.