New ramps cause concern in Greencastle

PAT FRIDGEN
The handicap accessible ramp in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act at the Greencastle post office isn’t quite what borough council expected. Other landings installed at the intersection by PennDOT have also been criticized.

The ADA-compliant handicap ramps installed by PennDOT this fall have been a cause of concern by borough officials. The three new curb ramps at the intersection of Washington and East Baltimore streets have drawn the most comments.

The ramp by the post office is steeper than expected, the one by John Allison Public House is smaller than required, and the one by the apartment house is marked with concrete elevations.

Alan High, Franklin County Construction Inspection Manager for PennDOT, said each of the corners met specifications. He agreed the Post Office ramp "could be nicer." PennDOT intended to return in the spring to grade the slope back to a two or three percent grade. Because of the steps at the restaurant, installing the required four-foot landing lengthwise and widthwise was "technically infeasible", so a modified ramp was approved. And the other corner met federal standards. High said it was an unusual corner because of the rounded building, and obstacles such as a traffic signal pole and signs.

"We made the best design possible," he said. He added that there shouldn't be any issues with accessibility in the quadrant.