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Three Way board votes to keep park walking trail open; playground, pavilion remain closed

STILL CLOSED – The playground and pavilion at Pine Hill Park in Three Way have been closed for weeks due to the coronavirus threat. The walking trail will remain open for guests to use. The city board voted to keep the park partially open until the COVID numbers drop.

With COVID numbers on the rise, the Three Way Board of Mayor and Aldermen decided to keep the status quo as to opening Pine Hill Park. The park was closed months ago when the coronavirus pandemic hit after Governor Bill Lee mandated all state parks close. At that time, Mayor Larry Sanders signed an executive order closing Three Way’s park.

In May, the city opened Pine Hill Park, but only the walking trail. The playground and pavilion were taped off to the public.
Each meeting since, the board has discussed reopening the entire park. And each time, the board has elected to only keep the walking trail open due to safety concerns.

Last week during the board’s August 3 meeting, update on the park was once again discussed. Alderman Danny Wade noted COVID cases have been steadily climbing in Madison County over the past few weeks. The board again decided now is not the time to open the playground and pavilion. The walking trail will remain open for now.

In other Three Way business:

•Three Way resident, Nell Moore, returned to address the board of parking issues in Willow Ridge subdivision. She had asked the city to do something about the parking. The city does not have an ordinance against parking on city streets.

Mayor Sanders said he sent a letter to residents of the subdivision asking them not to park vehicles in the streets. The mayor said it worked for a little while but they started back parking in the streets.

Moore said it is unsafe driving, weaving in between parked cars.

Alderlady Mary Ann Tremblay said the city cannot pass a parking ordinance that would designate only one area of the city. If an ordinance were passed, it would cover every city street. She said it would penalize 90-percent that don’t have an issue with street parking for one street that does.

Mayor Sanders has asked MTAS (Municipal Technical Advisory Service) for their opinion but since their representatives are working from home, they have not responded.

•Last meeting, a Three Way citizen made the board aware of an erosion issue near the intersection of Sanders Bluff Rd. and the Hwy. 45 Bypass. Mayor Sanders said he was aware of the erosion but did not think it was very bad. He was not sure if the ditch was on the state’s right of way or on the city’s right of way.

The mayor went back to see the problem and found it was not on the state right of way. He noted that it was stable but does have it on the watch list.

Another ditch problem is on Sanders Bluff Rd. near the back entrance of Turner Estates. Mayor Sanders said the culvert fills up with debris and is washing on either side. The city has to clean out debris regularly. He said it needs attention.

Alderlady Tremblay asked if it is affecting the city street. Mayor Sanders said if it blows out the street, it will be trouble.
The mayor said there needs to be a new headwall with wings on each side, which could cost in the neighborhood of $10,000 to $15,000.

Alderman Wade suggested getting city engineer, Shane Hollin with A2H, look at the ditch and get his opinion on how to repair.
Mayor Sanders said he would get Hollin to look at the problem and ask his advice on how to repair, but not draw up any engineering plans.

Mayor Sanders updated the board on the progress of having the giant billboard removed. He said a letter was sent to Lamar Signs and gave them 90 days to respond. After two week, a registered letter was sent that was received but the city has yet to hear from Lamar.

If there is no response, the city will turn it over to city attorney Steve Maroney to get communication started.

•The board approved purchasing five new board chairs for the new city hall. Board members are currently using chairs used from the meeting room, which are too low for the new boardroom desk.

The new chairs will be high back, vinyl with leather look, with an extended cylinder for raising and lowering the seat. The extended cylinder is needed for board members to be able to see over the top of the desk.

•Since the next city board meeting falls on Labor Day, the board voted to hold a called meeting on Tuesday, September 8 at 7 p.m., one day later. The board meets on the first Monday of each month and always has to reschedule around Memorial Day and Labor Day.

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