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Coraopolis vows to apply again for federal transportation funds

By Garret Roberts

-On the Agenda-

Congressman Conor Lamb, D-Mt. Lebanon, has submitted funding requests for transportation-related projects in Pennsylvania’s 17th District to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure to be considered in the 2021 Surface Transportation Authorization.

Coraopolis’ ask that would help the borough to make “Main Street” improvements was not one of the 10 approved for consideration in this round of submissions according to borough officials.

The submissions follow an earmarking process, with each member of congress asked to submit 10 applications from among the municipalities they represent. Of the funding requests submitted by Lamb, the following local proposals are under consideration:

Market Place District Improvements — Moon Transportation Authority (MTA) requested $3.1 million to fund the construction phase of a deteriorated one-mile roadway segment.

The build-out to Market Place consists of the installation of turn lanes and additional lanes, upgrading intersections to reduce congestion and improving air quality, and adding sidewalks and bike lanes to improve multimodal access and connections to the Montour Trail. According to MTA, the project will create 912 direct construction jobs and another 476 indirect and induced jobs.

Employers locating to Market Place will reportedly create another 1,296 permanent jobs.

McKees Rocks Bridge, Phase 2 — PennDOT requested $5 million for bridge preservation, sidewalk repair, structural steel retrofits, strip seal rehab and minor deck spall repair on the McKees Rocks Bridge in the City of Pittsburgh, Stowe Township and the McKees Rocks Borough of Allegheny County. This project is reported to create and retain between 30-50 jobs.

Carnegie Park and Ride Expansion Project — Port Authority of Allegheny County requested $10 million for construction of a new parking garage to expand the park and ride at Carnegie Station, providing an additional 200 parking spaces. The proposed project is reported to create approximately 200 full- time equivalent positions. With another application process opening soon, Coraopolis borough officials are preparing to submit another proposal. The deadline for these proposals is July 31.

Road program

Impressed with roadwork performed for the borough by Mele & Mele & Sons in 2020, Coraopolis council again approved the firm as low bid winner for the 2021 Road Improvement Program on May 6.

The bid for road repairs, which came in under the council’s initial estimations, will cost $354,779.50 to complete. When broken down, this will allocate $132,715.75 for borough roads and $222,053.75 for repairs to utility roads in the area.

In addition to asphalt improvements, the contractors working on the sidewalks on Main Street will be moving forward with curb and sidewalk improvements throughout this month.

According to officials, the curb will be poured within the next week and the sidewalks will be scheduled after that is completed.

Mele & Mele & Sons' previous work in Coraopolis was done on State Avenue, Beechford Avenue, two blocks of Second Avenue and the entirety of Devonshire Road.

In other news:

• Council is looking into opening meetings to small groups based on the governor’s removal of COVID-19 restrictions after Memorial Day. The council will review cleaning practices and do research into the matter as the restrictions are lifted. Meetings will continue to be made available digitally for the public for the foreseeable future.

• Bids for phase one of park construction are expected to go out this summer. The borough is waiting on the necessary permits to arrive, but plans to go to action soon after they receive them.

• The Pittsburgh Riverhounds group has filed its final application for land development related to the Montour Junction Sports Complex.

Allegheny County held a public hearing on the topic the first week of May and is set to approve the request, according to borough officials. A final decision will be made Aug. 3.

• Council also received updates from the county on the status of building demolitions in the area, with one commercial property ineligible under the community development block grant.

The council will be in contact with a company that will do assessment surveys of the eligible buildings.

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