Safety concerns topic of Marietta committee meeting

MARIETTA — Marietta City Council’s Streets Committee met Wednesday to discuss safety concerns on Ohio Street, an upcoming fundraiser at the Peoples Bank Theatre and a donation of repair services on Ellenwood Avenue.

Terry Johnson, who spends his summers in a condominium on Ohio Street, once again spoke before council about his concerns for pedestrians and cyclists that combat vehicles on the small brick street along the Ohio River’s bank.

“This is 100 percent a different animal than other city streets,” he said. “And with increased traffic with buses and tourism it seems in the city’s best interest to lower the speed limit on that 14-foot wide street.”

Councilwoman Kathy Downer, D-at large, said that she and Law Director Paul Bertram are looking into the city’s options for lowering the speed limit of the street from its current 25 mph.

Peoples Bank Theatre Executive Director Hunt Brawley brought before the committee a request for approval for an F-2 (Temporary Liquor) permit.

If given blessing by both council and the state, the permit would allow for alcohol to be sold outside the backside of the theater during a Halloween fundraiser planned for the theater on Oct. 27.

Brawley said the plan is to have outdoor space under a roped-off tent area on the Third Street side where acts traditionally load in and out of the theater.

“We would still leave about 10 feet of space on the sidewalk for walking,” he explained.

All council members present were in support of the request.

Washington County Library Director Justin Mayo asked for council’s approval to move ahead with repairing sections of Ellenwood Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets next to the main branch of the library and Washington Elementary.

“Our patrons and the school kids use that road often but it’s really fallen behind in repairs so I got an estimate of what it would cost to get it taken care of and am willing to pay for it,” he said.

The cost of the repairs, Mayo said, was estimated at $13,900. Councilman Tom Vukovic noted that the repairs would be seen as a service donation.

The repairs, once signed off by both the planned contractor Ken Strahler and City Engineer Joe Tucker, should be in place before the first snow in December.