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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 30, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas ofvrrP ri009 10/22/99    ^ CHO UEST IIICROPUBLISHINb IIJI    2627    E    VONDELL DRN EW (MBmKFELS 7 2Herald-ZeitungVol. 148, No. 159 18 pages in 2 sections June 50,1999    AV    Serving    Comal    County    since    1852    50    cents Ferguson Map Company New Braunfels Police are looking for the driver who struck a pedestrian on Monday night on Business 36 near Avenue A. Hit-and-run wreck kills ‘Scooter Man’ Police searching for driver involved in Monday accident By Chrb Crews Staff Writer New Braunfels Police are looking for a hit-and-run driver who struck and killed an elderly New Braunfels man Monday night on Business 35. Ray Biggadike, 78, known to many H-E-B customers as the “Scooter Man,” was pronounced dead on the scene by Pct 2 Justice of the Peace Bill Schroeder. Police said an unidentified southbound vehicle struck Big-gadike’s battery-powered scooter about 9:53 p.m. as he crossed Business 35 from the east toward Avenue A. New Braunfels Police Lt John Wommack said witnesses described the vehicle as a white or light gray two-door foreign car with the numbers “33” in the license plate number. Skid marks indicated the driver braked through the point of contact, let off the brakes and turned right onto Sycamore Street Biggadike was thrown almost 58 feet from the point of impact. One witness said the vehicle passed him, possibly going as fast as 60 miles per hour in the 45 mile per hour zone. Police recovered fragments of the passenger-side headlight and turn signal from the accident scene. Wommack pieced the fragments together and found an identification number that might lead to more specific information on the vehicle. Friends and relatives said Biggadike often would spend the day at H-E-B, then drive the scooter down Avenue A and Butcher Street to his home on Santa Clara Avenue. Bill Biggadike, a member of New Braunfels Independent School District board of trustees, said his father loved the community. “It just seems like everywhere I go, I meet people who knew him,” Biggadike said. “He always had a smile on his face — he loved living here.” Biggadike said his father never lost his sense of humor. “One day I asked him, ‘Daddy, why don’t you go to Wal-Mart anymore?’ He told me the girls were prettier at H-E-B,” Biggadike said. Detective Sean Gabbard said when worked security at H-E-B, Ray Biggadike was stationed near the See WRECK/5A i •» I BIGGADIKE World Changers share mission, faith By Heather TogoStaff Writer Saturino Castillo, who has Parkinson^ Disease and a pacemaker, is unable to make repairs to the house he shares with his wife. The Castillos got a little help from above this week when a crew of Texas youth armed with paintbrushes, hammers and a love of serving God arrived at their doorstep. More than 70 Texas youth are here through Saturday to paint, repair roofs and replace flooring tor residents. These World Changers are part of a volunteer youth mission program sponsored by the North American Mission Board. Youth and sponsors from The Woodlands, Dallas, Brenham and Andrews gave up a week of summer break to serve the community and share their faith. This marks the fifth year the World Changers have come to New Braunfels. This year, IO construction crews are working on IO houses in New Braunfels and Seguin. At Castillo^ house, a crew of high school students, braving 90 degree temperatures, are working to repair the kitchen and bathroom floor and part of the kitchen ceiling and to paint the outside trim by Friday. While operating a drill to fix the Castillo1^See CHANGERS^Inside Abby................................SA Classifieds.....................6-1    OB Comics...............................2B Crossword..........................SA Forum.................................6A Local/Metro........................4A Moviss................................SA Obituaries...........................3A Sports..............................7-8A Today................................2A Television..........................pp wwwJmkMfcmtoom Key Cods 76 Don’t hold your breath for a wider Landa Street By Peri Stone Staff Writer Main Plaza, Landa keep drivers on alert Downtown circle proves risky for pedestrians, puzzling to newcomers By Christina Minor Staff Writer Pedestrians beware: That’s the warning given by businesses located on Main Plaza. Although it’s a historical site most people don’t want to see destroyed, several businesses and local residents agree something needs to be done to alleviate traffic congestion. They also agree pedestrians have a hard time crossing the streets and Main Plaza can be scary for first-time users. “When someone mentioned eliminating it, that person almost got lynched,” New Braunfels city manager Mike Shantis said. “Many of our citizens consider it quaint. It might be hard to negotiate, but people like it.” The Plaza has been a part of New Braunfels since its founding. Around the tum-of-the-century, construction on the bandstand and fountain was started and shrubbery was added later. Until the 1950s, Main Plaza was designed for two-way traffic. There’s been talk, city engineer C.A. Bolner said, of shifting traffic away from downtown to Comal Street, but it’s an unlikely option. “You don’t want to take traffic from downtown,” S hands said. Main Plaza comes under the Texas Department of Transportation. Greg Malatek of TxDOT said the Plaza was not a top priority for change. “We might get a couple of calls a year about it,” he said. Lt. John Wommack of the New Braunfels Police said there were not as many accidents there as most would think. “The main accidents come from cars coming from behind and hitting those who have yielded to Plaza traffic,” he said. Because of the growing population, the Plaza is PERI STONE/HorafrZMung Drivers and pedestrians are often puzzled when they encounter Main Plaza, an intersection as old as the city. New Braunfels Police Lt. John Wommack said drivers should navigate the traffic circle by using their signals and staying in the outside lane. considered one of the high traffic areas. According to businesses around the Plaza, 8 a. rn. and 5 pm are the busiest traffic times. “I don’t live here, but something needs to be done about the circle,” said Caroline Harper of Bed and Breakfasts and Getaways Reservation Service, 471 Main Plaza. “No one knows who has the right-of-way, especially the tourists. As the population grows, there will be more problems.” The business has been on the Plaza for about a year. Employees said accidents came from drivers failing to yield and cars exiting the circle. “The tourists want to know how to get to the middle of the Plaza but because there is so much traffic, it’s hard for them to cross,” Harper said “lf they’re elderly, there is no way they could make it across." 'Harper suggested making the area into a square with stop signs or red lights which will allow for easier traffic flow. “There is a parking problem on the circle, maybe they could make it into a parking lot,” she said. Carmen Morales, another employee at Bed and Breakfasts and Getaways, said the Plaza was a great thing, giving the appearance of an old town. “It’s very quaint especially during Christmastime with all the lights,” she said “But something See PLAZA/3A Part of a series on the roads we drive Thursday: The Herald-Zeitung’s road warriors take you through the Seguin Avenue underpass. Landa Street probably won’t be changing anytime in the near future, so motorists should get used to the fact itls two-lane road. The Texas Department of Transportation has no plans to expand the street in the immediate future, said resident engineer Greg Malatek. But motorists on the east-west crosstown road between Walnut Avenue and Landa Park need not guess any longer — it’s definitely a two-lane, not a four-lane road Malatek said. “There’s not enough for four lanes the way it is,” he said “It’d just be too tight.” New Braunfels Police Lt. John Wommack agreed. He said most accidents on the road occurred when drivers did not see the cars in front of them slow to turn into a business. “They should widen it to four lanes,” he said. The daily average traffic count on Landa is 12,200 cars, according to TxDOT records. That’s down slightly from 12,300 in 1990. PCM STONEAteraM'ZMlung The Texas Department of Transportation might widen Landa Street between Walnut Avenue and Landa Park, but that project would be several years away. TxDOT, which maintains the street from Main Plaza to Walnut Avenue, might decide to widen it “It’s way out there,” Malatek said. “lt% on the books. It’s reached a priority but not enough to start acquiring right-of-way.” See LANDA/3A Steve Cox (left) from The Woodlands and Phil Thomas, 18, of Andrews work to repair Saturino Castillo’s kitchen floor on Monday. More than 70 Texas youth are in New Braunfels this week to serve the community and worship as part of World Changers, a volunteer mission project. HEATHER TOOD/ Herald-Zeitung ;