UNION MILLS — Even though summer is heating up, the Union Mills Conservation Club is planning ahead for colder, snowier months.
The Conservation Club put in a new sidewalk at the clubhouse in Mill Pond Park Monday.
Dick Howell, president of the Union Mills Conservation Club, said the sidewalk is meant to make the clubhouse handicap accessible, something the old sidewalk didn’t provide.
“It’s used as a town meeting place,” Howell said. “We have a lot of elderly residents in wheelchairs.”
The steps of the previous sidewalk were eliminated to make way for a smoother surface. The new ramp is heated, thanks to technology designed by the engineering firm Warmly Yours. Scott Rosenbaum, manager of Tech Support and Engineering at Warmly Yours, said the company’s systems can be used in residential or commercial buildings, indoors or outside, to heat areas using radiant heat.
“Our company paid for half of the cost — a part of our community outreach,” Rosenbaum said. “I mentioned the project, and our company decided to help.”
The sidewalk uses a moisture and temperature sensor to detect conditions for ice to form. It heats up coils imbedded in the concrete to melt snow and ice. Rosenbaum said the average cost to heat the sidewalk would be $20 to $25 dollars per snowfall.
However, Howell said, since the building isn’t used much during the winter, a manual off switch can be used so the energy and cost isn’t wasted.
Howell said the rest of the project is funded through fund-raisers, most notably the Mill Pond Festival in August, as opposed to using federal or state funds.
“Everyone donates time and effort,” Howell said. “Everyone’s dedicated.”
The building, originally constructed in 1953, was renovated in 2000. This new sidewalk marks the first time the walkway has been redone since the original construction 57 years ago.
The upcoming festival marks its 23rd appearance and will run from Friday, Aug. 27 to Sunday, Aug. 29.
Visit Warmly Yours online at www.warmlyyours.com