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Middletown's Got Game


Journal FP CurryWEBPress And Journal photo by Julianna Sukle -- Mayor James H. Curry III assembled a cast of notables for the inaugural Mayoral Madness.

Middletown’s basketball royalty meets Middletown’s current basketball stars in the Mayoral Madness Basketball Extravaganza, a challenge match created by Mayor James H. Curry III to raise money toward a fireworks show at the borough’s Labor Day celebration.

Alumni – joined by Curry and Middletown Borough councilman Ben Kapenstein – will play a team of students from Middletown Area High School’s varsity basketball teams at 8:15 p.m. on Friday, March 27 at the school gym.

The borough nixed the fireworks show last year, citing its cost. “No matter what obstacle stands in their way, Middletown residents easily overcome it with community pride,’’ Curry said. “Mayoral Madness is an attempt to funnel that energy, utilizing it to further foster community togetherness.’’


Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 March 2015 15:40

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For Highspire, a savings in taxes?


Transferring students from Highspire to Middletown Area School District raises questions regarding the way Highspire residents would be taxed and how debt from Steelton-Highspire School District would affect Middletown. 

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 March 2015 16:11

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Steel-High surveys Highspire parents, but are the results significant?

Steelton-Highspire School District administrators surveyed Highspire parents to gauge their awareness and reaction to the proposed transfer of Highspire students to Middletown Area School District, but a low response to the phone survey detracted from its effectiveness, according to a professor and researcher.

Steelton-Highspire conducted the survey of Highspire residents in response to a request by the Department of Education for information about the feelings of Highspire parents.

The district reported that 31 of the 225 families surveyed had responded with answers that could be tabulated. Of those who responded, 90 percent were aware of the initiative to move students to Middletown – and 74 percent favored the move.

To Linnaya Graf, a college professor and researcher and owner of PrePEAR LLC, Steelton-Highspire “didn’t learn people didn’t have an opinion; they learned they did not conduct an effective survey.”

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 March 2015 16:06

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Steelton-Highspire's Response: Highspire student transfer would cripple Steelton schools, Steel-High says

The transfer of Highspire students from Steelton-Highspire School District to nearby Middletown Area School District would cripple Steelton’s schools, according to a document Steel-High district filed with the state Department of Education.

More than 55 percent of Highspire property owners signed a petition to send the borough’s students to Middletown Area School District. In its response, written by Steelton-Highspire Superintendent Ellen Castagneto and filed in February with the Department of Education, Steel-High argues that Highspire students should stay.

Highspire’s tax money would be missed in Steelton, where Highspire contributes about double its share of the district’s finances despite having about half the population of Steelton. Highspire students account for 17 percent of the overall student body in Steelton-Highspire, 235 students out of 1,359 in the district, but Highspire tax revenues supply 34 percent of the district’s revenue.

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 March 2015 16:08

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BIG DIG II: Main Street project will bring detours

Last year it was the downtown and South Union Street’s turn.

This year, it’s Main Street’s turn.

Welcome to another Big Dig in Middletown.

Work started Monday, March 16, on a $2.5 million project to replace aging water and sewer pipes under the nearly mile-long stretch of Main Street – Route 230 – through town.

Get ready for another spring and summer of detours and temporary inconvenience. But the result will be a long-term improvement.
The work is being done in five phases, starting with the section of Route 230 that runs from Vine Street east to Hoffer Street.

The borough is timing the project to finish by August, when all of Main Street is to be repaved by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. To help you understand the five phases of the project, and the detours that accompany each phase, refer to the map that is included in this week’s Press And Journal. The map is provided courtesy of the Borough of Middletown, and can also be found on the borough’s Web site,

The Vine-to-Hoffer leg is expected to take four-and-one-half weeks to complete, according to the borough.

During the Vine-to-Hoffer phase, through-traffic will be detoured using Maple Road.

For truck traffic, eastbound trucks will use Vine Street to get to Interstate 283. Trucks will return to Route 230 at the Toll House Road interchange in Londonderry Twp. Westbound trucks will reverse that route.

Phase Two: This phase of the project will be at the intersection of Main and Vine streets. It will take about nine days, according to the borough. Conewago Street will serve as the detour for through-traffic.

The truck detour will use the Airport Connector to access Route 283 on the west end of the detour, with the east end staying at the Toll House interchange.

Phase Three: Work will focus on Main Street from Vine Street west to North Union Street. This is the longest single phase of the project and is expected to take about six-and-one-half weeks to complete.

Through-traffic will be detoured to the north of Main Street.

Trucks will continue using the Airport Connector for the west end of the Route 283 detour. The east end shifts to the Vine Street interchange.

Phase Four: This phase will consist of work at the intersection of Main and North Union streets. It is expected to take about 10 days. Through-traffic will be detoured to the south using Water Street.

Trucks will use the same detour as in Phase Three. In addition, truck traffic on Route 441 will also be detoured. This detour will use Route 283 between the Franklin B. Linn (North Union Street) interchange and the Airport Connector to reach Route 230 to the Ann Street Bridge and to the Route 441 truck route (Ann Street).

Phase Five: The final phase would run from North Union Street to Nissley Street/Apple Avenue. It is to take about three-and-one-half weeks. South Union and Ann streets will be used as through-traffic detours.

The Route 230 project is estimated by the borough to cost just over $2.5 million. The entire project is being paid for using proceeds from the $43 million payout that the borough received in January from United Water in return for agreeing to lease the borough’s water and sewer systems to United Water for 50 years.

The borough is saving $250,000 in asphalt costs by having PennDOT repave Main Street, said borough spokesman Chris Courogen. In addition, the borough is saving more money by using a “cured-in-place” process to rehabilitate many sections of the sanitary sewer mains, he said.

Another project that will impact Main Street and borough residents this year is replacing the bridge over Swatara Creek that connects Middletown and Londonderry Twp. on the far eastern part of town. The bridge project is to start in September, and be completed in the summer of 2016, according to PennDOT.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 March 2015 16:09

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