Pedestrian improvements coming; water line cost lowered

by Sue Serdinak

Aug. 2 village council meeting

Richfield Village Council adopted an ordinance to extend the sidewalk on the east side of Broadview Road from Emerald Parkway to the Giant Eagle store on the west side of the road. A crosswalk will be created at the crest of a hill on Broadview Road, near the entrance to the Richfield Heritage Preserve.

Perrin Asphalt was awarded the $218,382 contract.

In the same resolution, council approved building a crosswalk on state Route 303 between the Town Hall and Humphrey Road. The cost is $32,874. The resolution also called for repairing other sidewalks for $40,000.

Council discussed the location for a crosswalk across Route 303 at the Parker Serdinak Trail but had not received a quote for the project.

Historic district water line

Again, construction of a water line in the central historic district has been delayed. Scheduled to start in July, work should begin by September, according to Planning Director Brian Frantz.

The good news for property owners is that Cleveland Water has recalculated the linear-foot charge to be assessed to property owners. The utility company will charge $105.47 per foot of frontage. They earlier projected the cost would be $112.30 per linear foot.

Solid waste disposal

Council had first reading of a resolution to renew the contract with Rumpke of Ohio for solid waste disposal and recycling services. The village would pay $16.75 per month per household in 2023, $17.42 per month in 2024 and $18.12 in 2025. Total cost to the village and township would be $539,685 for the first year. The village would pay $332,655 in 2023.

Council approved a bid of $48,000 from Fabrizi Trucking to eliminate dirt mounds and grade the area at the Everett Point housing development on Everett Road.

Safety forces

Brett Lee was sworn in as a new part-time Richfield police officer.  Photo by S. Serdinak.

Mayor Michael Wheeler swore in Brett Lee as a part-time police officer. Lee attended Kent State University Police Academy after graduating from Nordonia High School.

Police Chief Michael Swanson reported that all officers in the department recently received High Threat Close Quarter Battle Training through Metro Swat. Swanson said this training teaches the latest Metro Swat tactics in dealing with an active shooter.

Wheeler and Swanson attended a Summit Safety Council meeting regarding ALICE training, a program that teaches school personnel how to respond to an active shooter.

Fire Chief George Seifert described an extremely busy night of July 29.  A fire destroyed a house at 4154 Wheatley Rd. Seifert said fire crews could not gain close access to the house because of trees along the side of a long driveway. He said crews had to drag heavy fire hoses over 100 feet.  No one was in the house at the time.

“We couldn’t get to the house. A tree was blocking the entire driveway,” said Seifert.

Crews used water from a tanker and from fire hydrants on the north side of Wheatley Road. The road was closed for three hours because the fire was on the south side.

According to social media, the owner of the property was less than a mile away at the AMVETS post at the time of the fire. Some members of that organization have set up a Go Fund Me account for Eric Griesinger, the owner.

About 15 minutes before dispatch received the fire call, the department responded to a head-on collision on the interstate.  While fighting the fire for the next three hours, the department received four more emergency calls. Bath, Brecksville and Copley provided mutual aid during this time.

Center of town

The former Heinle House on Grant Street was razed along with many evergreen trees surrounding the property. A building to house the new Richfield Brewing Company will be constructed on the property, and a new access road to the library and a parking lot will be created. 

Zoning enforcement

Councilperson Jeff Stoppenhagen said he wants the administration to hire another person for the zoning department so that zoning laws regarding property maintenance can be enforced.

Wheeler responded, “From the administrative side, it is on our list. As soon as we can discuss it and advertise it, we will.” ∞