More Frustrations Over Roadwork in Northumberland

NORTHUMBERLAND, Pa. -- It's been less than two weeks since the latest phase of the Duke Street Reconstruction Project started in Northumberland, and some people are frustrated. This phase of the project involves King and Front streets, one of the busiest intersections in the borough.

"This is the second-to-last phase of our construction, and by the way, this is the hardest phase of our construction," Mayor Dan Berard said.

"At first, the project foreman said we were going to have access to the library across the end of King Street. As of Monday, they started digging and taking that away," Jeff Johnstonbaugh said.

The Priestley Forsyth Memorial Library is located at the corner of King and Front Streets. Librarian Jeff Johnstonbaugh says since this phase of the project started, the library's numbers are down by 50 percent. People must park several blocks away to get to the library.

"The only choice they have is to park on the southbound side of King Street, which, that is still open, but then they do have to walk across the park for the library," Johnstonbaugh said.

The project foreman tells Newswatch 16 PennDOT will put a temporary road in the coming days so there is access to the library.

In addition to access to the library, some people are concerned about how they're going to get to Northumberland's upcoming 9/11 service at King Street Park.

"I know it's going to be an inconvenience, but we have to do what we have to do," Dick Simpson said.

Officer Dick Simpson of American Legion Post 44 is in charge of the service. He says there is parking at the church across from the park.

"They can fill up King Street here, and they may have to park by the Second Street School and walk a couple of blocks, but exercise is good," Berard said.

This phase of the Duke Street Project is expected to be finished by Thanksgiving.

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