Brundidge residents ‘disheartened’ by decision

Published 8:25 am Thursday, October 6, 2011

Some residents say the city council’s decision to disregard a request to reconsider paving additional parking spaces at Brundidge Station is “disappointing and disheartening.”

Dixie Shehane, president of the Brundidge Business Association, expressed disappointment that the vision for a park that has been discussed for more than 10 years is now disappearing.

“I’m disappointed that the city didn’t grant our request,” she said. “Our vision was for a park with trees, benches, swings and a fountain and maybe even a gazebo. Several people had mentioned the park as a place to have outdoor concerts.”

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Shehane said that such a park was suggested as a part of the city’s stratigic plan but the final plan has not been made public.

The city council voted on Sept. 20 to spend $65,000 to correct a drainage problem at the Brundidge Station location and pave 30 to 39 additional parking spaces.

A group of citizens met with Mayor Jimmy Ramage on Sept. 27 to discuss their vision for a large green space at the Brundidge Station site. Ramage encouraged the group to meet with the city council on Oct. 4.

“After that meeting with the mayor, I really thought that the city council would reconsider their plans to put additional paving at Brundidge Station,” said Margaret Ross. “We have plenty of parking places all over town.

“It was disheartening that the council didn’t seem to care at all what we thought. They didn’t even have the courtesy to respond to our request. They just sat there without saying a word. Is that what we pay them to do?”

Ross said she would be willing to make a donation to the park effort and to help with the landscaping. She believes other members of the community would gladly do also.

“We love Brundidge and we want it to be a town that we can be proud of,” she said. “A downtown park would be a good starting place for the community to get involved.”

Delatha Mobley said that she, too, is extremely disappointed with the city council’s decision to ahead with the paving project.

“A group of us attended a public hearing at the city council meeting on July 19, concerning the remediation of an outdoor recreation park on the south end of town,” Mobley said.

“I specifically asked if that (recreation) park would have any effect on the park at Brundidge Station. My question was, ‘Will we still have our park at Brundidge Station?’ and his reply was that it would have no effect, that we would still have our park at Brundidge Station.’ I believed him when he said that.”

Mobley said she checked the minutes of the July 19 meeting and her comments were not included.

“In talking with a couple of council members about the park at Brundidge Station, they said that they have been discussing the paving for a while,” she said. “I have not been able to find a mention of it in the city council’s minutes until it was approved on Sept. 20.”