Emmaus Buys Rodale Part 3
The third part of our installment will deal with the concerns of moving another vital public service down to the former Rodale location and what implications that will have on the citizens.
As with the other articles we will use the Emmaus Borough Special Presentation for the bulk of the info we use to explain what the Emmaus council members presented to the citizens as the basis for their vote to purchase the former Rodale facilities.
If you haven’t lived in Emmaus for long you may not realize that the Emmaus Police Station is only eight years old and was built on land the Emmaus Council purchased under “Eminent Domain” from the former Claude E. Fischer Post 7088 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars VFW that stood on the same spot.
The original proposal from 2004 stated the new police station will be two stories in the front and one story in the back, for the garages, and Council voted 5-1 to approve plans for the roughly $3 million building
Besides displacing the Emmaus VFW another tenant, The East Penn Model Railroad Club and Its HO-gauge model railroad display had been open to the public during Christmas week almost every year since 1972, Dan Mohr, president of the small club “In the late ’70s, we had people lined up for two blocks down the street between Christmas and New Year’s,” said Mohr. “We’d get 3,000 to 5,000 people that week.” This was a great loss to the community caused by the Eminent domain proceedings.
Fast forward to January 2015 and council voted again to potentially relocate the police station. As mentioned above it’s only 8 years old, it is not even paid off yet and the Emmaus council wants to move it. Council Chairwoman Gilbert and Councilman Brent Labenberg were on council back in 2004 and Gilbert voted on constructing while Labenberg said he supported this new station back in 2004.
On pg 41 of the special presentation notes the police are least affected as they are usually out on patrol the majority of the time, so the necessity of their moving is negligible. If need be the office can be relocated to the new site and this would open up room caused by their present poorly designed new facility.