Sunbury is a city in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, United States. The city is located on the east bank of the Susquehanna River, just downstream of the Confluence of its main and West branches. It dates back to the early 18th century and is the county seat of Northumberland County. Thomas Edison features in the town's history, and the historic Edison Hotel was renamed in his honor. Other historic sites include the Beck House, Northumberland County Courthouse, and Sunbury Historic District, all listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Parks and recreation:
The extensive Sunbury Riverfront Park Project is in the planning and implementation stages in Sunbury. An extensive floodwall protection system was designed and built by the US Army Corps of Engineers in 1951. Additional height was added to the wall in 2003. The system has provided protection from 15 major flood events over the past 50 years. In 1972, flood waters from Hurricane Agnes crested at 35.8 feet (10.9 m) at Sunbury, two feet higher than the crest in 1936. The wall held back the water and residents showed their gratitude in messages they wrote on the wall.
Hurricane Agnes in late June 1972 was blamed for 10 deaths in Lancaster County, eight in Dauphin County, five in York County and four in both Northumberland and Luzerne counties, according to the Susquehanna River Basin Commission. Additionally, a multimillion dollar fish ladder is being built across the river in Shamokin Dam to mitigate the impediment of the shad migration up the Susquehanna River that the annual inflation of the Adam T. Bower Fabri Dam causes. The Adam T. Bower Memorial Dam, an inflatable fabric-tube dam barrage impounding the Susquehanna River, creates a 3,000 acres (12 km2) Augusta Lake for recreation. It is inflated in May and deflated in the fall. The new waterfront development in Sunbury will provide a marina with transient boat docks, walking trails, gardens, an amphitheater and a new accessible fishing pier. In all three acres of land will be added to the river side of the flood wall.
The city offers baseball fields, a skating park, tennis courts, playgrounds, a community pool and a small park that is located next to the county courthouse, in the downtown area. A vacant building in the Shikellamy State Park along the river is under consideration for redevelopment as an environmental research and education center. Designed in the 1960s, the facility was originally the Basse Beck Environmental Center. It has been vacant for several years.
The city and state struggle economically, part of America's "Rust Belt". A Brookings Institute publication has cited reasons including a lack of inter-municipal coordination and cooperation, a changing employment base and a dearth of jobs paying a living wage, out-migration of young people, an aging population, the need for workforce development, and an inequitable local tax structure.
The Susquehanna Industrial Development Corporation (SIDCO) received $173,500 in planning grant funding (2005) to support the redevelopment of the Wilhold Manufacturing facility located in Sunbury. The BOS funding paid for a market study, phase II environmental study, wetland review, traffic impact study and title survey. The site, an 11.6-acre (47,000 m2) former rail yard and plastic manufacturing plant, is to be developed into four, 2-acre (8,100 m2) shovel-ready sites. It was suggested that the redevelopment of this facility will result in the creation of 120 jobs. The site was purchased by Moran Industries, based in Watsontown, for $200,000. Moran is using the space for food grade storage.
The local public school system is the Shikellamy School District. The administrative offices are located at Administration Center, 200 Island Blvd, Sunbury, PA 17801. Shikellamy High School has a 84% graduation rate according to the district report card 2010. In 11th grade, 49% were proficient in math. For Reading 62% were proficient in 2005-2006. The high school is ranked 384th out of 606 public high schools in Pennsylvania.
- St. Monica's School
- Sunbury Christian Academy
- Northumberland Christian School
- Connections Academy
- SusQ-Cyber Charter School
- 21st Century Cyber Charter School
- Pennsylvania Virtual Charter School