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Jackson Theatre owner wants sidewalk fix

Wesley Wilson, owner of the old Jackson Theatre, is hoping what is good for one end of downtown Main Street will soon be good for the other end.
“They’re widening the sidewalk (near Fox Street) and I think that’s great,” Wilson said. “But we’re at a disadvantage. We’re at the opposite end of the street. And there is commerce down there.”
Wilson asked members of the town’s Tree and Townscape Board at their May 30 meeting to consider a plan to improve the sidewalk in front of the Jackson Theatre property.
“There’s a planting right between the door to Marj on Main and the adjoining shop now occupied by the paranormalists,” Wilson said. “That walkway — the brick from the planter to the face of the building — is something under 50 inches.”
Wilson requested the town either widen the sidewalk there or remove the planter.
Robb Phillips, a member of the local ghost hunting team that operates Paranormal Technology at 121 W. Main St., also spoke in favor of a change.
“It looks like a hazard,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of people step into that planter and almost hurt themselves.”
According to Town Administrator Bob Browning, the width of the sidewalk is within the parameters of town guidelines.
“We try to maintain 48 inches of walkway space,” he said. “But it is one of those locations where it is fairly tight in there.”
Browning also said the red bud trees located in front of the old Jackson Theatre are in “good shape.”
While considering which trees to keep and which to replace as part of a downtown makeover, the Tree and Townscape Board voted in April to keep the trees in question.
“There are two businesses here and the planter is right in front of the doors to those businesses,” Wilson pointed out. “Please give us some help on that.”
Members of the Tree and Townscape Board agreed to take a look at the planter during the next few weeks and bring the issue back to the board at its June meeting.