In Your Community: Clearing up concerns about beloved Soldiers and Sailors Monument

NEW BLOOMFIELD, Pa. (WHTM) – During their meeting on Monday, Perry County commissioners addressed concerns about the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in the New Bloomfield Square.

Now that more traffic moves through the square, there are safety concerns about trucks having difficulty making left turns.

“It’s not just speed,” Commissioner Paul Rudy Jr. said during the meeting. “It’s very difficult for a huge truck to get around [the square.]”

A recent traffic study lists several options to fix the problem, including moving the Soldiers and Sailors Monument.

The monument has been in the town square since 1898.

“This is a symbol of New Bloomfield,” Borough Council President Malinda Anderson said. “It actually is featured on all our town banners and all our town stationary. It is part of our town identity.”

Anderson says she has received several calls from people concerned about the idea of moving the monument.

“Perry County people are very patriotic,” Commissioner Stephen Naylor said. “We have a lot of relatives and we have a lot of people personally who were in the Civil War and right up to the current wars that’s been going on. To remove this monument, I think, would create a hailstorm of controversy.”

“It means a lot to people,” Naylor added. “We understand we have a problem, but we’re going to try to work through it and see what other options we have.”

The commissioners stressed that moving the monument is only one option; the study is the first of several steps before anything concrete will be finalized.

Since state roads are involved, PennDOT will be working with the Borough of Bloomfield and Perry County.

Options other than moving the monument including changing up parking spaces or even the grassy area around the monument to make it easier for trucks to swing wider.

All of Perry County’s commissioners said they would keep the historical and community meaning of the monument in the forefront of any conversations about changes to the square.

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