For the past several years Hickory Street resident Jack Fisher and his neighbors have been lobbying for the repaving of Second Street (Route 370) between the Vine Street intersection north to the village limit.
“I sent a note to the Liverpool Village Board a year ago asking them to look into why the state has not paved Second Street in the 12 years since I’ve lived here,” Fisher recently wrote to me in an email. “All they ever do is patch, patch every other year or so leaving an ugly washboard, cracked, bumpy surface for all of the thousands of cars that drive this road daily.”
This summer, the state Department of Transportation has undertaken an extensive repaving of Route 370, but only north of the village boundary.
“Lo and behold,” Fisher wrote, “a year later someone outside of the village finally complained enough since they are now milling and paving all of Route 370 all the way to Baldwinsville, skipping over the five or six blocks of Second Street in the village that desperately needs paving. Why can’t the village get this done?”
Liverpool Mayor Gary White agrees with Fisher that Second Street needs work, but he thinks the DOT is delaying work in the village until the Onondaga Lake Parkway project is finalized.
“Every year we’ve requested the state have Route 370 repaved within the village,” White said in a telephone interview. “Our DPW supervisor, Bill Asmus, talked to them personally. They say it’s not in their budget. Last year they patched some of the road, which seemed to be the best they could do. I can’t believe they didn’t include the village this year, but guess is that they’re putting in off because they’re still in the middle of a big Onondaga Lake Parkway project.”
The DOT is drawing up various plans aimed at increasing safety along the Parkway, that part of Route 370 that stretches from the village to the Route 81 on-ramp north of Syracuse. DOT officials have told White that they’re considering the construction of a cement median barrier to prevent crossover collisions had moved to the top of the DOT’s list of safety improvements for the Parkway. Traffic engineers have also suggested reducing the number of lanes on the Parkway from two lanes in each direction to a single lane in each direction.
Mayor White thinks the DOT is reluctant to undertake village projects right now, because they’ll be doing plenty here when Parkway plans are finalized.
“My thought is that maybe they didn’t want to spend any money in the village now,” White said. “It’s a supposition on my part — nobody has said that to me, but we have requested Second Street repaving on a regular basis.
Scores of souped-up Chevys, dozens of Deuce coupes, plenty of Ford T-Bucket hot rods and even a DeLorean will hit the highways of Central New York this weekend as the Syracuse Nationals convene at the State Fairgrounds.
Several local auto enthusiasts have been getting in the swing of things every Tuesday evening at the weekly car cruise at Salt City Dogs, at Northern Lights in Mattydale. I stopped by June 26 for a tummy-full of Hoffmann hots and an eyeful of vintage vehicles.
Salt City Dogs co-owner Terry Wilson, who was raised here in Liverpool, grinned from ear to ear as more than two dozen cool cars filled the parking lot while Nick Caplan from Dinosaur radio spun some cruisin’ tunes and made announcements.
The antique autos there included a bright, lime-colored 1949 Chevrolet pickup, a fire-engine red 1932 Ford, a glossy black 1957 Thunderbird convertible complete with black fuzzy dice hanging from the mirror. A little 1962 “comatose” Comet looked even smaller than it was parked alongside a big blues-and-silver 1961 Ford Econoline pickup.
Inside the restaurant — where you can buy char-grilled burgers and sausage sandwiches along with dogs and coneys — a mini-exhibit of spectacular color photos of classic cars is displayed over the condiment counter. The auto images were shot by Baldwinsville lensman John Meloling, who’ll surely be out snapping aplenty at the Fairgounds this weekend.
Billed as “The Largest Car Show in the Northeast,” the Syracuse Nationals run from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, July 20 to 21, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 22, at the State Fairgrounds in Geddes. Admission costs $20 per adult and $8 for kids ages 6 through 12. Eighteen rock bands have been hired to entertain over the three days; syracusenationals.com
But even if you miss the wonderful wheel at the Fairgrounds, you can still catch the weekly car cruise every Tuesday at Salt City Dogs; (315) 454-4271; saltcitydogs.net.
“We call it the State Fair with cars instead of cows.”–Bob McLean, publicity director for Syracuse Nationals.
The columnist can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.