SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

November 21, 2013

Park and drive

Proposal for Ferry Way Landing draws concerns

(Continued)

Scanlon said the road would be built near the wall at the edge of the park that separates it from the main road, away from the water side.

The park is also squeezed between the site of the proposed restaurant, where a former McDonald’s restaurant has sat mostly empty for 20 years, and the city harbormaster’s office.

The proposed road would be one-way leading from the restaurant lot, through the park to the harbormaster’s lot, then under the Beverly-Salem bridge and out of the site via Congress Street. Vehicles would not be allowed to use the road to get into the restaurant lot.

As the area is currently constructed, the only entrance and exit is on Water Street, and critics say that is not enough to handle the traffic that would be generated by a 200-seat restaurant.

Scanlon said the roadway was first recommended years ago by the Police Department’s former traffic officer as a way to improve traffic flow on the waterfront site.

“It would be very close to the wall and quite narrow,” Scanlon said. “It’s not as if it really cuts through the thing.”

Frank McMahon, who walks his dog in the park every day, said he does not like the idea of putting in a road.

McMahon, who lives on Ellingwood Court in the nearby Goat Hill neighborhood, said the area is often crowded with fishermen, lobstermen and people sitting in or walking through the park.

“There’s not enough room down here (for a road),” he said as he walked his dog, Boomer, in the park earlier this week. “I don’t think it would look right.”

Schetzsle said the park is the “only piece of green space” on the waterfront and should be preserved. He also said the city could be liable if someone in the park is hit by a car.

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