Water Main Work in Hawley

HAWLEY -- It's still a busy time of year around Lake Wallenpaupack.

The summer vacation season is nearing the end while construction work in nearby Hawley has only started creating problems.

This weekend is Wally Lake Fest, a big three-day festival so it should be busy around the area.

In downtown Hawley, it's busy but not the way that businesses would hope.

Late August in downtown Hawley is usually busy with folks from out-of-town but not this August. Instead, it's construction crews working to replace an old water main along Main Avenue.

"It`s just inconvenient for the store owners," said John Barrett of Beach Lake. "Especially at summer."

Inconvenient perhaps because crews have traffic down to one lane while heavy machines work outside shops, restaurants and businesses including Beverly Beck's Trading Post.

"Yesterday was really bad, I had two big machines out front," she said.

Beck figures she and other shop owners are losing dependable business from families who vacation at Lake Wallenpaupack.

"The one lane traffic hurts people don`t know where to go or how to go," she added.

The Hawley Diner felt the brunt of the construction project. Employees said they lost water for a while during breakfast and had to scramble just to stay open.

"We had to get five-gallon jugs of water to make coffee, to do our dishes we had to get water from the house next door," said Tracey Leverock.

Work is supposed to last for at least another month and according to Aqua Pennsylvania, the water company doing the work, borough leaders chose to have work done during the day instead of overnight so as not to disturb residents who live above the businesses.

A pair of women was tending to the flowers along Main Avenue, hopeful that when the project is complete Hawley will be back to the way it should be.

"For the tourists, downtown Hawley is a nice place to come, nice shops. If you`re having trouble with the traffic, come back when this is finished," said Bonnie Christiansen of Lakeville.

The construction crews plan to stop work in Hawley for the weekend during Wally Lake Fest and then pick up again next week.