BLAKELY, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — If there is any silver lining with the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that more people are getting outdoors.
The Lackawanna County Heritage Trail has seen more foot traffic. The bridge over the Lackawanna River separates Jessup and Blakely Borough. At the end of the bridge on the Peckville side is a crosswalk for Lackawanna River Heritage Trail walkers, runners, and bikers.
“Pretty busy street and we just try to pause, like watch for traffic,” Bridget Coffey of Jessup said.
Eyewitness News caught Coffey out running. She tells Eyewitness News she uses the trail weekly near Depot and River Street.
Signage could definitely help. It could definitely be better,” Coffey said.
There is only one state law sign. There are no other markings indicating there is a crosswalk here for motorists who are approaching this section of the trail.
“Since we do have so many more people using the trail in general and specifically that section of trail in the Mid Valley we want to take and work with the borough and try to improve what we can,” Lackawanna Heritage Valley Authority trail & environmental projects manager Owen Worozbyt said.
Worozbyt says users of the trail have tripled since before the pandemic. Blakely Borough has been awarded $123,000 in a state grant from Red Light Violations in Philadelphia.
Improvements will be similar for the crosswalk at Third Avenue and Broadway Street in Scranton. ADA-accessible ramps, flashing lights, high visibility colored concrete crossings and more.
“It’s great that there is more people out using it. It’s just that we have to make sure the drivers are and everybody is aware that the trail does cross at that intersection,” Worozbyt said.
The design of the new intersection is now in the planning stages. It’s likely to be built sometime this summer.