In Post-Lower Macungie Development Boom, Talk Of ‘Smart Growth’

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jim Palmquist is one 66-year-old who has the time, motivation and legs to walk the nearly two-miles from his Lower Macungie home to the closest restaurant.

What he doesn’t have is a death wish.

With the proliferation of cars and trucks clogging roads between his Fresh Meadow Drive neighborhood and the closest Brookside Road businesses, walking can be a life-risking proposition, particularly because of the sporadic placement of sidewalks and walkways that go virtually nowhere.

“This is a township that is completely auto driven,” said Palmquist ,who recently did a thorough study of sidewalks in the area of Lower Macungie and Brookside roads. “You can’t walk to the Wawa. You can’t walk to the township building.”

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/news/local/eastpenn/mc-lower-macungie-smart-growth-20120930,0,2415679.story

Lower Macungie Mapping Out Ambitious Greenway Plan

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lehigh County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Budd Coates dreams of one day jogging continuously along pathways and parks through Lower Macungie without the need to compete with traffic cluttering streets and highways in one of the Lehigh Valley‘s most populated municipalities.

“Not to pick on anyone,” Coates said, “but Lower Macungie is so fragmented with some of these developments, you not only can’t get from one development to another in anything other than a car, you can’t get from one block to another.”

The avid Emmaus runner’s wish may not seem that far-fetched. Lower Macungie is in the process of mapping out an ambitious environment-protecting greenway plan, complete with a network of trails that would help connect the 22 1/2 –square-mile township’s neighborhoods to nearby municipalities and to surrounding parks, schools and other landmarks.

Forming the spine of the system would be 18 miles of trails that would follow the Little Lehigh and Swabia creeks.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/news/local/mc-lower-macungie-greenway-plan-20120414,0,6389307.story