Catasauqua Press

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Township exploring options for Troxell Street improvements

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

At Hanover Township’s meeting Aug. 15, the Troxell Street roadway improvements dominated the discussion. Earlier, township Engineer Albert Kortze, at the request of council, explored using advanced ground-penetrating radar to determine if any sinkholes are in the area.

The pavement is prone to sinkholes, and the idea was to repair any potential sinkholes before installing a new road surface.

The cost came back with a range of $23,000 to $28,000.

Chairman Bruce Paulus would rather spend the funds on improving the subsoils. Councilmen Curtis Wegfahrt and Robert Heimbecker want to see the results of the technology.

“It would be of interest to see what is under the ground so we can prepare — and so can the homeowners,” Heimbecker said.

The counterpoint is that there is a limit to what repairs can be made.

“If the sinkhole is identified at 50 feet below the ground, we are not going to try to repair that,” Paulus said.

He has seen two instances where the technology was used and did not produce good results — Catasauqua Lake in Canal Park and the municipal building. The technology report gave an all-clear, but sinkholes appeared and had to be addressed.

Kortze suggested a plan where the pavement and gravel are removed and the strata be assessed before making improvements. He proposed it as an alternate to the technology solution.

Councilmen Robert Lawlor and Michael Wooley are not convinced of either argument. The decision was put off until the next meeting.

Utility repairs are a concern. The roadways do not meet township standards.

Since Bethlehem Water Authority did the Troxell Road work, Kortze reviewed the work with Bethlehem representatives and the subcontractor. The Bethlehem representatives said the roads looked acceptable — “Looks good from Bethlehem.”

Wegfahrt and Heimbecker are not pleased. Kortze will contact Bethlehem, although Kortze indicated that Bethlehem was willing to provide an estimate of the cost to bring it up to township standards. The item is sure to be the subject of a future meeting.

Solicitor Jackson Eaton is working with the Rockefeller Group to close up details on township agreements on the right of way for Willowbrook Road. FedEx is contemplating opening a portion of the facility to truck traffic in October.