Saturday, September 25, 2021

Lights

 I do like seeing the Christmas lights left up year round on the light posts around the town square. I would like to see brighter lights on the west half of the Square. Once you get away from the sidewalks, which are well illuminated along Illinois, it gets pretty dark around the Pavillion> I have felt  some trepediation at times walking arcross the Pavillion parking lot after dark. I will have to take a look tonight and see if the lighting there has improved with the new lights the city installed on the east half of the Square.

Town Square Loudspeakers

 The city recently installed loudspeakers and brighter lights in an attempt to break up later night gatherings on the town square. According to the city website,  the police department has had more than 1150 calls to the town square. While some of the calls are for motorist assistance and bar checks, the majority "are shootings, fights, drunk and disorderly conduct, public urination, bathing in the fountain, defecating on public property, bullying, drug use, and drug sales".

By my calculations, that comes out to an average of four police calls to the town square a day since the start of the the year. That's an awful lot of police activity in a small part of town. Barrring posting police presece there permanently, I am not sure what else the city can do to mitigate the calls there. I am not sure how effective music will be at moving people around but brighter lighting should make people going to restaurants int he area more secure.

Friday, September 24, 2021

Roundabouts

 given that the roundabout on Chautaqua has been operational for about four months, the city posted a link on the effieincy of roundabouts vs. traffic lights. the city has plans to install a second roundabout at the intersection of Grand and Lewis lane but wanted to see how they worked in operatioin first. Now that the Chautaqua one has proven successful, and if funding comes available, I imagine we will see one installed at Grand and Lewis sometime.

Woodlawn Cemetary

 Given the historical importance, at least to the local community, I was nonplussed to find the flyer holder with the walking tour of the cemetary emply on a visit last week. The material in the flyer replicates the information on the plaque standing next to the brochure holder so pele visiting the cemetary still have access to the information but the brochure provides a convenient guide to the graves and sites of note within the grounds. Maybe the city could post a PDF of the brochure online and link it to the history of Woodlawn?

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

AAA Auto Razed

 The AAA Auto lot buildings on North Illinois have ben razed and the contractor is now creaming the brick and concrete from the site. I still expect U Haul will expand onto the lot but there is no signage indicating that is the case.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Railroad

 Looking at the multi-block long back up  caused by trains coming through town, primarily around 9 a.m. , noon and aournd 4 p.m. makes me wish for downtown underpasses or overpasses sinilar to what we have at Mills street and Pleasent Hill Road. The city looked at putting underpasses for Main and Walnut back in the 1960s but pushback from the downtown business community put the kibosh on that.

I asked about the feasabiltiy of puttin in overpasses on the two streets but was told in order to make the gradiant a reasonable one, IDOT would have to raxe the buildings on either side of Main and Walnut for a block east and west from the tracks, destroying waht reamins of the early architecture of downtown Carbondale. An underpass is a bit more reasible but would require each street's closure for several months, if not years. Again not feasible so we are looking at blok long backups with trains come through for the foreseeable future.

Monday, September 20, 2021

Legacy Bright Spot Award

 Keep Carbondale Beautiful has introduced its Legacy Bright Spot Award, given to previous winners of the Bright Spot Award who have undertaken long term care of the property. From the press release

The Legacy Bright Spot award is an award given by Keep Carbondale Beautiful to recognize previous recipients of the Bright Spot award. This recognition is intended to encourage and maintain long term care and stewardship to the local environment of Carbondale. One of the missions of Keep Carbondale Beautiful is to preserve and maintain the local natural beauty of Southern Illinois.

The inaugural Legacy Bright Spot award winner is kicking off with 601 W. Walnut. Kathy and Austin Rigney recall receiving the Bright Spot award in July of 2004. “A sign just showed up in our yard one day, and that was the bright spot award” Kathy laughs, telling what she remembers. The home was built in 1917 and has been added on to over the years. They moved to the residence in 1988. Preparing for a growing family, Kathy began gardening in the front yard. In this nesting garden, irises, spiderwort and Pocomoke crape myrtle were planted. The oldest surviving plants are Jerusalem roses, over 20 years old.

The May 8th storm shifted their yard around, an 80 ft oak lodged in their attic. Getting the tree out, “we were entertainment for the whole neighborhood” Kathy recounts. After that, they had the bug for reorganizing the landscape. A white blooming redbud took its place, casting its canopy over hydrangeas and boxwoods lining the front of the home. A Japanese maple shades a horseshoe shaped garden with English ivy and ferns. Around the side of the home is an oasis from the busy city street, birdfeeders are set among a variety of herbs and large hostas.