Pharos-Tribune

December 19, 2013

Downtown charity roadblocks moved

Officials: Third and Market more business, traffic friendly

by Mitchell Kirk Pharos-Tribune
Pharos-Tribune

---- — Charity roadblocks in downtown Logansport are moving to a new location.

After receiving complaints from business owners at the roadblocks' former location at the intersection of Broadway and Sixth Street, city officials have designated the intersection of Market and Third streets as the new location for local organizations to solicit donations from drivers.

The Logansport Board of Public Works and Safety approved the measure unanimously Wednesday.

Chris Armstrong, Logansport community development director and a member of the board of public works and safety, said the city had been planning to move the roadblocks to Market and Third streets, but couldn't until Third Street was relinquished by the Indiana Department of Transportation.

The state swapped several roads with the city and Cass County after the completion of the new Ind. 25 Hoosier Heartland Highway in October.

Armstrong and Logansport Mayor Ted Franklin, who chairs the board of public works and safety, both said the new location will be less of a hindrance to business and traffic.

The road is wider at Market and Third streets, allowing traffic to flow more freely. Previous news reports received several online comments from readers saying roadblocks often caused traffic to jam, encouraging drivers to avoid the area.

Lauren Waldron, owner of The Thrifty Shopper near the roadblocks' former location, said her business would decrease by about $300 in a single day when volunteers would be out asking drivers for donations.

The former location was also home to several businesses whose street parking availability was compromised when roadblocks took place.

Businesses at three of the four corners of Market and Third streets have their own parking lots, while one of the corners is occupied by a small park without amenities. However, there are several businesses west of the intersection on the north side of Market Street that rely on street parking.

Holly Cooper, owner of Balloons By Golly Etc. on East Market Street, doesn't think the change will be a problem.

"I think that down here we've got more lanes of traffic," Cooper said. "It's the widest part of the city down here, the roadway is. I think it'll be fine."

Cooper went on to say the city has had roadblocks near her store in the past and that it never seemed to affect business much.

"I think it's better here than up where they do it on Broadway," she said. "People are going in and out of the City Building so much to pay their light bills and that kind of thing. Down here, we're the only businesses."

Rich Pattee, co-owner of Leather or Knot Antiques & Collectibles Mall on East Market Street, said he doesn't mind the change.

"It's really only for a specified amount of time through the summer months," Pattee said.

Roadblocks are available two days a month between March and October.

The city is accepting applications from non-profit organizations for roadblocks in 2014. Applications are available in the mayor's office on the second floor of the City Building, 601 E. Broadway, or by emailing Armstrong at carmstrong@cityoflogansport.org. Applications are due by Feb. 7, 2014.

In other news, the board also:

• Approved a curb cut at 925 Erie Ave. for gas service installation and 1501 Meadlawn Ave. for demolition.

• Approved a resolution allowing $298,037.85 in 2013 appropriations encumbered to 2014.

Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or mitchell.kirk@pharostribune.com. Follow him: @PharosMAK

Need a roadblock? The city is accepting applications from nonprofit organizations for roadblocks in 2014. Applications are available in the mayor's office on the second floor of the City Building, 601 E. Broadway, or by emailing Armstrong at carmstrong@cityoflogansport.org. Applications are due by Feb. 7, 2014.