Supervisors think of alternatives to dangerous intersection

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
Antrim Township supervisors are exploring alternatives to upgrading the Williamsport Pike/Hykes Road intersection. One thought is to divert Hykes to Countryside Drive. Motorists could then access the busy state road at a site with better visibility.

After 90 minutes of another contentious discussion on making the Hykes Road/Williamsport Pike intersection safer, two ideas popped up that the Antrim Township supervisors found worth exploring. The Feb. 15 worksession focused mainly on ramifications to traffic once Norfolk Southern closed Milnor Road.

Chairman Sam Miller advocated asking NS for more help in improving the intersection since Hykes would become a collector road. He had spoken to two NS representatives after the Feb. 8 board meeting, and believed the rail company would do more to secure funding. The men said their lobbyist could speak up in Washington D.C. They had asked Miller for a cost estimate on upgrading the site. While PennDOT and Rep. Todd Rock had said no to any assistance on fixing the intersection, Miller asked that the supervisors be unified on pressuring NS.

Fred Young III was opposed. "We've already asked," he said. "It sends a message that Antrim Township won't take no for an answer. In the future we may not be heard."

Alternate plans

Young suggested making Hoffman Road one way from the Pike where it met Hykes Road, with the exit coming out on Worleytown Road. Drivers could then enter Williamsport Pike farther south.

Rick Baer added another possibility, to angle Hykes Road to connect to the northern entrance of Countryside Drive where it met the Pike.

"It'd be pretty expensive to do that," said Young.

Curtis Myers thought it was a "fantastic" idea. "That would be a real fix."

Aware that everything was conceptual, the board asked township administrator Brad Graham to check with Dewberry Engineering on the feasibility. They realized that the public would find out about the option before any real study was done, and Baer predicted some phone calls to the township.

Miller and Myers were optimistic NS would contribute to the Hykes bypass, and since it would be strictly a township road, PennDOT would be out of the picture.

In other business, the supervisors, in the absence of James Byers, were anxious to see the draft of an official township map nearly finished by engineers, and Miller stressed that any road through Tayamentasachta would not be allowed. All were supportive of informing PennDOT on the needs at Exit 3 to make it useful for Atapco and NS traffic.