Landrum council still seeking site for rail car museum

Published 8:00 am Thursday, April 12, 2018

Around 20 people attend meeting

LANDRUM — Approximately 20 citizens attended the Landrum City Council work session Tuesday night.

With so many attending, council members moved the session from the conference room to the council chamber at city hall.

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Attendance was up because of the discussions regarding a location for the rail car museum. Though city council members had discussed a location somewhere on North Trade Street, several business owners and citizens expressed concern about the rail car blocking view of the businesses.

Other concerns included the trees that would have to be cut down, and the interference with the farmers market.

“Because of these comments, we might want to consider the locations near the depot again,” said Landrum City Administrator Rich Caplan. “In February, we had looked at two sites near the depot: one in front and one behind.”

Council members and others expressed concern that a location in front of the depot would block the view of the depot from Highway 176. Others said it might interfere with events at the depot, such as weddings.

In February, council members were concerned if the museum was placed behind the depot, it would not be as easily seen or accessed from the main downtown area. Others expressed concern about access to restrooms from this location.

Caplan said if they chose the location behind the depot, they would only have to remove one tree and a sculpture that was not easily seen. In further considering the location behind the depot, council members discussed signage to direct the public to the museum and to prevent them from mistakenly entering private events taking place in the depot.

“Most of us looked at it and think it’s best,” said council member Jon Matheis. “A lot of people were concerned about trees coming down on North Trade.”

Comments from the crowd regarding the location behind the depot included support from business owners, having informative kiosks to let visitors know about the museum, considering some maintenance work done on the rail car’s wheels, and undercarriage and parking issues.

During the regular meeting, the city council took no action regarding the rail car location, deciding to put off the decision until they could look further into the location, take measurements and consult with engineers about placement.