Move to allow ATVs on streets bold, meaningful

All-terrain vehicles running rampant in the streets of Renovo?

No, that’s certainly not the intent of Renovo Council’s decision to allow ATVs/UTVs to ride on certain borough streets.

It’s about council throwing out a welcome mat to those who value the trail-rich region as a mecca for riding the hundreds of miles of ATV/UTV trails in the valleys and mountains.

It’s a bold move, and a good one.

That’s not to say there won’t be problems, but we applaud local leaders for understanding what ATV/UTV tourism means to the forested region known for its scenic vistas and breathtaking trails.

And those who ride their machines on the streets must know — and be taught a lesson if they don’t abide — that all pertinent motor vehicle laws apply.

There are currently no local ordinances governing when ATVs/UTVs can be operated, so the roads are open to them 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

And we understand that some council members are allowing the no-local-restrictions idea on a trial basis, and if riders abuse their privileges, it all could be revoked because of a few irresponsible people.

There are limits. ATV riders are permitted to travel on:

r Erie and Ontario avenues, the alleys, and the numbered streets (Third through 15th) are open to the riders.

r Huron Avenue (Route 120) can only be crossed — for example, to go from the 200 block to the 100 block of Eighth Street. Huron Avenue is a highway and also Renovo’s main street. The green ATV signs along it are actually informing a rider he or she can cross Huron and travel on any other road, but they cannot remain on the main street.

Along with working with state officials, council worked with the Central Mountain ATV Club on this idea — designed to make Renovo a hub for tourists who love riding the nearby Whiskey Springs ATV Trail, the Bloody Skillet ATV Trail, the Haneyville ATV Trail and others.

In today’s world, communities in our region must be bold with their ideas to attract tourists, and the community of ATV riders who frequent the area have proven to be responsible (they raise money for worthy causes), have worked hand-in-hand with state officials for trail upkeep, and are outstanding environmental stewards.