During the summer months in Northeast Pennsylvania, construction is about as common as an 80-degree day. Many of the roads in the area are blocked or revamped, rerouting traffic and making for some major rush-hour headaches. So what happens when Coal Street, a main thoroughfare that connects the Wilkes-Barre and Wilkes-Barre Township boulevards and leads into a big shopping area gets a total overhaul?
Things get a little messy.
"I used to complain about all these side streets here, but they came in handy when that construction was going on right here and the road was being taken care of," said Rodney Graham, 35, who lived in New Jersey before moving to the area about six years ago. Graham lives on the northern part of Meade Street, one of the many offshoots of Coal Street that have seen some changes over the past month.
"It's nice though, that they shifted everything and repaved it," he continued. "I'm excited for when it's done. It's already looking good."
Meade Street is a long stretch that runs from Coal Street to Moyallen Street. The northern part seems a relatively quiet area where neighbors stroll about on a nice day, some heading back from the Coal Street Park.
"We like it here," Theresa Martinez, 43, of the south end of Meade Street said as she watched her 5-year-old niece Jordan run up the street ahead of her. "The park is very close and there's always someone there for her to play with."
Has the construction really bothered anyone?
"Not really," Samuel Barhydt, 27, said. "I think construction is just something that's expected in this area; it's always going on somewhere. It just so happened to be by this street. It's nothing terrible to go through to end up with a nice street. The way they're setting it up is just going to help with traffic."
One of the perks of living on Meade Street is that it's within walking distance of many places besides the Coal Street Park. One such business is David's Coffee Shop, just steps off of Meade on New Market Street.
David's Coffee Shop was created by retired Wilkes-Barre School District teachers Suzanne and John Joseph to serve as a training site for young adults with autism. The cause hits home for the Josephs, whose 26-year-old son David has autism. The cozy shop serves the usual coffeehouse fare, from brew to doughnuts, bagels, bread, and a daily soup.
Love the street you live on? Have a good story to tell? Let Sara Pokorny know at 970-7127 or [email protected]