Making the walk to school saferPublished 8:48pm Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Niles area students will have an easier path on their walk to Brandywine Elementary School if the Niles Township Board decides to take on a sidewalk project at the corner of Fulkerson Road and 13th Street.
The issue obviously is the cost, both of installing the sidewalk and removal of trees and shrubbery in the area.
That’s where Mike Kachur, owner of Kachur Tree Service, has come in. He addressed the Niles Township Board Monday, offering free tree and brush removal if the township pays for sidewalk installation.
“New families come into the township and say ‘wow, no sidewalks?’” said Kachur, a father of a Brandywine student. “We need sidewalks. Right now it’s just grass and snow and mud in the wintertime.”
Kachur said he currently drives his children to school every day because of the dangers of letting them walk without a sidewalk.
“I never let my kids walk to school, not with 40-, 50-, 60-mile-per-hour traffic. You’d have to be crazy to let your kids walk it,” he said.
Kidwell said part of Fulkerson Road is already slated to have sidewalk added.
Treasurer Jim Ringler suggested the board set the project out for bids and the board unanimously approved his motion.
Niles Township Supervisor Jim Kidwell will bring the bids to the board at its next meeting. If the price is right, the board will approve the project.
“I commend you for offering your service for free,” Kidwell told Kachur.
If the project is approved, it wouldn’t cost the taxpayers anything, as such projects come from township’s metro fund that receives revenues from cable television fees.