The trail set to go through the park will not go down Clark Street’s unconstructed right-o-way.
The Common Council voted 5-1 Monday, Aug. 22, to make the change. Mike Kempf voted no.
“I walked it just tonight. I still don’t see any problems with that,” he said prior to the vote.
The city’s Recreation Committee had recommended changing that part of the proposed trail after several neighbors abutting Clark Street brought up concerns.
“We all want the trail,” Ald. Chuck Gerlach said, but he is opposed to that proposed segment of the trail.
Kempf said, “You guys aren’t looking at what’s best for the city of Weyauwega. You’re looking at one individual. We’re going to have people coming and saying, ‘I don’t want sidewalk in front (of my house). I don’t want them looking in my house.'”
Gerlach said many people walk on the sidewalk in front of his home, but his backyard has privacy.
For one homeowner on that part of Clark Street, the front of their yard is actually more like a backyard, he said.
“I don’t believe in shoving things down peoples’ throats,” Gerlach said.
Mary Jane Baehman, of Weyauwega Trails, asked the council to postpone a decision until the engineering begins.
In an Aug. 17 letter to the council, Kelly Baehman, who is the president of Weyauwega Trails, wrote, “It’s wonderful that the Desens family has been able to enjoy the additional 60 feet of right-of-way for the past 25 years. However, it’s the appropriate time for the city to use this property for the progressive good of all taxpayers.
“There is no monetary requirement requested here of the landowner, as there is when other property owners are informed that a sidewalk is in the best interest and safety of others in the community.”
The council’s vote this week means that, in the park, the trail will now go from the top of the hill to Emerald Street and come out on South Street and then go up one block on West Street and connect to Clark Street.
The trail segment in the park is one of three proposed throughout the community.
Also proposed is a segment of trail from Third Avenue to Mill Pond Circle and a trail that connects Lincoln Street with Alfred Street, going around and behind the new senior housing unit in the city.
Last October, the city of Weyauwega’s funding request – made on the behalf of Weyauwega Trails – was among those approved for transportation-related infrastructure projects.
The city will receive $278,362 in funding to develop the three new segments of trail, which, in all, will total 7,303 feet.
The overall project is estimated to cost $347,953.
Twenty percent of the cost, or $70,000, will be covered by the city.
The project is slated for 2013.