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Future of center of roundabout still up in the air

Times Observer photo by Josh Cotton City officials have been discussing what will go here - in the center of the roundabout at Pennsylvania Ave. and Market St. - for some time. While those plans aren’t settled, the work to finish the center will not take place until the spring.

Whatever the final design for the inside circle of the roundabout at Market St. and Pennsylvania Ave. maybe it won’t appear until spring.

“Nothing is settled,” Department of Public Works Superintendent Joe Reinke said during Tuesday’s Parks, Recreation and Landscape Commission meeting. “We’re not set on the trees yet.”

Reinke said the city has “gone through 10 different ideas.”

He did say that a flagpole will be a part of the design.

One of the challenges is that whatever goes in the center of the roundabout can’t be located exactly in the center due to the placement of infrastructure within the circle.

Times Observer photo by Josh Cotton Parks, Recreation and Landscape Commission Chair `Josie Gerardi speaks during Tuesday’s meeting. Gerardi, who has served since 2005, announced her resignation at the conclusion of the meeting.

To that end, one proposal pitched at the September meeting of the commission included a triad of trees – one hemlock and two clump river birch along with river rock, which would appear on a slight rise to motorists.

There are three feet of topsoil in the center in addition to the clay and dirt base that is underneath the intersection.

City officials previously indicated that accent lighting would also be a part of the project.

City Manager Mike Holtz said nothing would be added until the spring but said he thinks three trees will be placed there.

He also said there has been a proposal for letters on the exterior wall of the circle.

Leaf pickup to continue

Even though Monday into Tuesday marked the first substantial snowfall for the year, city leaf crews will continue their work.

“We have a leaf crew out today,” Reinke said, explaining that the city’s trucks aren’t yet set up for snow removal.

“The next 10 days look like rain and warmer weather,” he said. “It doesn’t make sense for us to rip apart leaf season yet.

“We’re going to probably pass through town a few more times,” Reinke added. ” (We) put a little salt on the road today with the trucks we have set up.”

Longtime member resigns

Josie Gerardi, who joined the city’s then-Street Landscape Commission in 2005, tendered her resignation at the conclusion of Tuesday’s meeting.

“You’ve guided us,” Holtz said. “To say you’ll be sorely missed is an understatement.”

Gerardi’s resignation letter said that she’s enjoyed the work and the relationships and highlighted how the city’s urban forest and other amenities “has brought another level of knowledge and pride to our city.”

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