Posted: May 13, 2005 11:00 am EST

Flight 93 memorial closer to design decision (~11 col. in.)
by Colleen Freyvogel, The Tribune-Democrat, Johnstown, Pa.
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    By Colleen Freyvogel
    CNHI News Service

    SHANKSVILLE, Pa. – Residents viewed the remaining five Flight 93 memorial designs last night and were able to envision how the project will impact their neighborhood.
    Jeff Reinbold, project manager for the National Park Service, said every three months he tries to hold a public meeting to keep the public informed of the impending changes.
    “It was a chance for us to report back to people the studies on issues that they’ve raised,” Reinbold said. “Also, to get people’s ideas.”
    He said residents have heard ideas for the memorial and they are curious about how they will impact the area.
    Carol Duppstadt, owner of a local store, said she came to learn how the memorial will affect her business in Buckstown.
    “Living here, we don’t really think about that,” she said. “More people come through in the warmer months and people really ask a lot of questions about the memorial.”
    Duppstadt said people from all over the world have stopped in at her little country store during visits to the site.
    “I can’t project the future with this,” she said.
    Duppstadt came to ask questions and learn more about the economic impact the memorial will have when it is complete.
    Donna Zwisk of Shade Township attended to learn about the size of the memorial.
    Zwisk said her husband comes to most of the public meetings and she was interested in the land the site will border.
    Although the project has been ongoing since 2001, Reinbold said completion is in the foreseeable future.
    “The reality is we’re about three or four months away before we get the final designs,” he said.
    Many residents came to the meeting with questions about the potential impact on traffic, the local tax base and the water supply.
    Reinbold said studies about local taxes are ongoing.
    He said traffic concerns are justifiable and an easy solution is being examined. Reinbold said closing off residential roads will cut down on traffic flow.
    Most concern centers on Skyline Road, he said.
    Another issue is the loss of the rural landscape, said Anna Breinich from the Pennsylvania Environmental Council.
    “Most people want to keep this a rural area,” she said. “The reality, this area needs economic development.”
    More than 130,000 visitors have visited the temporary memorial site.
    Studies project 400,000 visitors will come through Somerset and Shanksville annually by the 10th anniversary.
    Reinbold said the number of visitors then will level out to around 230,000 a year.

    Colleen Freyvogel writes for The Tribune-Democrat in Johnstown, Pa.

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