Board wants to preserve historic railroad bridges
Board members discussed spending money to save an old railroad bridge that was slated to be taken down by the Onondaga County Department of Transportation this summer.
With funding from a federal grant, the county plans to replace a road bridge on Jordan Road in Skaneateles Falls this summer. County engineers first held a public hearing on this project in March of last year, at which they stated the old railroad bridge would be taken down to make room for the construction workers. The previous town board discussed saving the bridge after hearing about its history and the possibility of converting it into a pedestrian crossing from former supervisor Charlie Major, however they decided not to take action.
The old bridge is one of three on town property that could be turned into pedestrian bridges as a part of a trail that could one day connect the northern hamlets of the town to the village creekwalk. Though the town does not plan to take on that project anytime soon, saving the bridges keeps their options open in the future, Board Member Connie Brace said.
At a recent meeting with county officials, current board members were offered an option of preserving the bridge at a cost of $1,812 to the town — to construct retaining walls to protect it during the road work. The board discussed spending $500 to have C&S Engineers inspect the structural integrity of the bridge before giving a final answer to the county, though they tabled the discussion to see what it would cost to have the engineers inspect the other two corresponding bridges also.
In other business:
—Supervisor Mary Sennett asked the board to consider the possibility of eliminating or reducing production of the town newsletter.
Depending on how many pages are in each edition, the quarterly newsletter costs the town between $4,800 and $10,000 to print and mail every year. Due to the amount of information available on the newly-redesigned town website as well as in the local newspapers, the newsletter may no longer be a necessary expense, Sennett said.