CLEARFIELD – At Thursday night’s Clearfield Borough Council meeting, Fire Chief Todd Kling voiced concerns regarding CNB Bank’s expansion project and its impact on traffic in the alley – Vanvalzah Avenue – that neighbors the Clearfield Volunteer Fire Department.
Kling said CNB has proposed using Vanvalzah Avenue for customers to access its drive-through windows once the expansion has been completed. He said he’s opposed to any traffic changes, while it would not only interfere with the fire department’s access, but also the available parking.
Kling said the CNB expansion could limit access by interfering with the 15 parking spots for fire department personnel, as well as by increasing traffic on Cherry Street. Due to the fire department’s location, he said Cherry Street is the only way to access it.
“It’s all one-way streets around the fire station. We are locked in,” said Kling. He added that on some Friday nights, he’s observed CNB’s Cherry Street branch with vehicles backed up onto the street while trying to access the drive-through services.
“The set-up over there is not finalized yet,” said Code Enforcement Officer Larry Mack of CNB’s expansion project.
Borough Operations Manager Leslie Stott said she’s been advised that there would be a “very technology-based drive-through” system. Once the expansion has been completed, she said CNB would be capable of operating with three lanes and one teller, as compared to the current Cherry Street branch, which has six lanes.
Stott said CNB had implemented a similar system at its Meadville branch. She said it was working very well there.
Kling said the department receives approximately 300 fire calls per year at various times. Both he and council member James Kling said there isn’t always adequate parking at the fire department, with some personnel parking near the park or on Third Street.
James Kling also said that the parking spots are too small for some of the fire department’s vehicles. As a result, he said some larger vehicles extend into Vanvalzah Avenue
“There used to be tractors and trailers going down that alley,” said council member Fred Wisor.
“I think they need to be re-looking at the alley, and the bank using part of its own property,” said James Kling.