Recent city work along Glade Run has left some residents upset.
Michael Holtz, director of Public Works, said the city has cut some trees around the Glade Run Floodway. A big brown sign on Pennsylvania Avenue announces the location of the floodway, he said, which is a man-made river which runs up behind Locust Street.
It was built as a construction project in the 1950s, Holtz said, and the city has a requirement to maintain the structure. The Department of Environmental Protection and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers inspect it twice each year, he said, and one of the reports revealed the city had to do some work, which included removing trees.
Those trees were hanging over the levee, Holtz said, and could have broken off and fallen into the waterway. Reactions from nearby residents were mixed, he said, and they had been given prior notice when the work begin about a year ago with tree removal being one of the last projects done.
Stephanie Slocum of Mead Street said she didn't know what work was going on when an entire logging crew parked on her property last week. On garbage day, she said they removed her trash from the curb and put it back on her porch.
According to Slocum, she did not grant permission for vehicles to be on her property. However, Holtz said the city has a right-of-way to the levee.
Bob Eaton, another resident from the area, said they were not asked or told about the work. In July 2011, Holtz said letters were sent out to about 30 residents with property adjoining the levee which outlined the work.
"I worked in the woods for 30 years," Eaton said. "If I hadn't done the job in half the time they did, I would have done it for free."
There are still poles near the levee with slabs of cement attached, Slocum said, and she worries they could roll down and strike one of the neighborhood children. Workers plan to clean-up the area, Holtz said, and leave it in the condition they found it.
Many residents of the neighborhood are retired, Slocum said, and she is a stay-at-home mom. If she hadn't been there during the day, she said she never would have known what the workers were doing.
"It comes down to respect," Slocum said.
Though he doesn't believe the workers did any damage, Holtz said he's sure it would be restored if they did. All the work done was directed by the Corps and DEP, he said, and the city did not choose it.
The levee needs continued certification and approval, Holtz said, and the consequence of not keeping it up and doing the required work would be many of the houses adjacent to the floodway would have to buy flood insurance.