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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - January 7, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania Altana mirror © Copyright 2001 SUNDAY, JANUARY 7, 2001 $1.50 newsstand IN SPORTS ^ Vikings, Raiders advance in NFL playoffs IN LIFE First offour parts THE SPECTER OF SPRAWL Fifty years ago, the area around Plank Road was a muddy mess. Today, it’s a tangle of concrete, neon and metal. PIRU!0F NATION urn in a RHI IUD Some worry that unchecked expansion and development threatens our way of life Our sprawling Today Sprawl as a social phenomenon Jan. 14 How Blair County grew, and how it’s developed Jan. 21 Life in the city versus life in the suburbs Jan. 28 Arguments for and against smart growth in the past 50 years, Americans have fled our cities at an alarming pace, spreading out into what formerly were forests and farms, creating social and governmental headaches in the bustling areas they’ve moved to and the decaying ones they’ve left behind. With Altoona’s population dipping below 50,000 this year and suburban development reaching a fever pitch, there is growing concern that Blair County may be developing the early symptoms of a bad case of suburban sprawl. Stories by William Kibler Photos by Kelly Bennett Graphics by Tom Worthington Layout and design by Ray Eckenrode ► For complete report, please see Pages A8,9 ^ ‘Lone Ranger’ teaches values to kids SEEKING SHUSTER’S SEAT 9th keys: Unity and alliances By William Kibler Staff Writer Franklin County is hoping for unity when it sets out to battle Blair County for the right to have one of its own carry the Republican flag in a special election this spring to replace Congressman Bud Shuster. Franklin already has five potential Republican candidates, but its Republican chairman, Allen Twigg, wants to go to the 11-coun-ty district nomination meeting with just one. “It’s kind of foolish to go in there with two or three,” he said. Among the ll district counties, Franklin has the most weight with 33 votes, and it can get maximum leverage by tying it up in a single war club, Twigg said. Though most populous, Blair is second with 28, with delegate numbers based on votes cast for George W. Bush in November. ANALYSIS Blair has at least three Republicans interested in replacing Shuster. In Blair County, county Commissioner John Eichelberger holds the strongest cards among three Republican hopefuls, said longtime political observer Tom Healy, a Democrat. “The hand I’d rather have at the poker table now belongs to John Eichelberger,” Healy said. As Blair County Republican chairman, Eichelberger can pick 28 delegates to the 11-county miniconvention, which would have a total of 140 votes to choose the nominee. “That’s a pretty good start,” Healy said. If Eichelberger can cut a deal with Franklin County for its 33 delegates, he’d have it made. Please see Keys/Page A5 Shuster COMING MONDAY Staff Writer Robert Igoe takes a look at how controversial lobbyist Ann Eppard is likely to fare in Washington when her longtime ally Bud Shuster retires. Eppard Blair’s tourist dollars up; big jump forecast Tourism spending ■ Officials believe the convention center will trigger significant increase of income. By Craig Williams Staff Writer Blair County can’t claim to be the cradle of the nation like Philadelphia. No major battles have been fought here like in Gettysburg. And the county doesn’t have the attraction of nationally known baseball, hockey and football teams like Pittsburgh does. But even without such national-level attraction, Blair County’s tourism appeal appears to be growing. A recent state tourism survey placed Blair squarely in the middle of all 67 counties in terms of the sales impact of tourist dollars brought into the region. According to the Department of Community and Economic Development study, more than $133 million Please see Tourist/Page A4 The amount visitors spent in area counties in 1999: Centre County $282 million Cambria $147 million Blair $133 million V Bedford $78 million Huntingdon 9 million Source Department of Community and Economic Development. Mirror graphic by Tom Worthington ll DELIVERY Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 BIG FOUR # 2 4 3 I Lottery numbers, A2 WEATHER Mix of sun, clouds, 36° M Forecast, B2 Ft ORS FURNITURE "S BIGGEST NEW YEAR’S SALE ‘PAY NOTHING TILL 2042! NO DOWN PAYMENT! NO MONTHLY PAYMENTS! NO FINANCE CHARGES! STOREWIDE SAVINGS urn! #rgTO60% OFF-WSTl Solid Oak or Solid Cherry Bedroom JL m 'PAYMENT FREE TILL. JAN. 2002. Oak. (nm    swa#** SHOP TODAY NOON-4, MON.-FRI. 9-9 RetailS22B4 SALE $1142 (Except Wednesday 9 am - 5:30 pm) □ LOCAt Q SPORTS Q BUSINESS Crime/accidents A6 Outdoors C9 Stocks E2,3 Hospitals Obituaries A6 A6 Scoreboard C8 CDs, Mutuals E4 Opinion A7 QJ LIFE Q CLASSIFIED QJ NATION Astrograph Movies D4 D3 0 COMMUNITY NEWS Newsmakers B4 Puzzles D4 Couples G2 Strange Brew r Travel D6 ^ Yesteryear ^ G3 filG&fR HW! Mi’ pMBO 2.99 ;

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