Construction bids due this week for work on unsafe retaining wall

Some in Port Deposit unable to park at homes

August 22, 2004|By Artika Rangan | Artika Rangan,SUN STAFF

PORT DEPOSIT - Bids are due this week for repair of this town's retaining wall, which has been threatening to fall since earlier this year - and none too soon for residents of the High Street neighborhood, who are tired of walking the quarter-mile hill between their homes and the municipal parking lot where they've been forced to park since February.

John Klisavage, whose family is among seven other families living on High Street, said he makes mental calculations about what to carry before leaving home ---- two lunchboxes, a handful of business papers, maybe an umbrella.

Klisavage, a father of children ages 4, 11 and 12, said he will be relieved when the wall is repaired.

"It's caused a lot of hardship," he said.

"There are times when it's raining, pouring ... and I'm with my three kids," said Klisavage. But, he said, "I'm not complaining. I'm thankful to still be in my home."

"If we were evacuated, there wouldn't be any patience left," said Kerry Anne Abrams, deputy mayor, who lives in the neighborhood.

Town officials closed a section of High Street in February, when the wall first began bulging, because engineers worried traffic could add pressure to the wall.

Town officials expect repair work on the wall to start by October. Bill Eldred, director of economic development for Port Deposit, said repairs would include anchoring the wall to the bedrock behind it and fastening the street surface to the groundwork beneath it.

Since the road closed, ambulances and firetrucks have been prohibited from driving on the section of High Street where Abrams lives.

Abrams worries the winter months could cause problems finding fuel oil to heat homes. "Packages delivered at town hall, groceries, petroleum," she said, detailing the reasons for leaving the house. "It's the basic things you take for granted when you have a car."

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