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South Fayette awards contract to raze shuttered movie theater

| Friday, Nov. 4, 2016, 8:48 p.m.

South Fayette officials are one step closer to demolishing the former Star City Cinemas building.

Last month, commissioners awarded a roughly $227,000 contract to Ritenour & Sons to tear down the building near Millers Run and Hickory Grade roads. The price was the lowest of nine bids received for the project.

Work could begin before the end of the year, township spokeswoman Andrea Iglar said.

“We don't have an exact date yet but the goal is that it would be done by the first quarter of next year. It could occur before the end of this year or it could occur during the first quarter of next year,” she said.

“It will be demolished and then everything will be cleared out.”

A park-and-ride lot was relocated to another area of the former movie theater site, Port Authority of Allegheny County spokesman Adam Brandolph said.

The transit agency will be forced to find a new location when the property is sold.

“Right now we have not identified a different location but we are aggressively seeking a new one,” Brandolph said.

He said township leaders have been “supportive of public transit” and helping to identify potential sites for a new lot.

About 70 people use the park-and-ride lot each weekday, Brandolph said. The agency's 31 and G31 bus routes service the lot.

The township purchased the former Star City Cinemas property in 2009 for $5 million, with thoughts of constructing a new municipal building.

Since then, parcels have been sold to different developers.

In 2013, South Fayette sold about 2.6 acres to UPMC for $1.65 million, where the hospital system built a south campus of Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. A parcel of less than an acre was sold to Washington Financial Bank.

Commissioners also awarded to Horizon Properties a 120-day extension on its $5 million sales agreement to purchase the Star City property. The deadline was extended from Nov. 9 until March 9.

“They're working still on their due diligence,” Iglar said. It's unlikely the sale would be finalized before (March). The park-and-ride likely will be there at least until next March,” Iglar said.

South Fayette leaders are considering expanding the current township structure at 515 Millers Run Road with 60,000 square feet of space that would house a community center, library, wellness center and expanded office space for township administrators and the police department.

Money from the sale to Horizon Properties would help to fund the first phase of the expanded community center. That phase could cost $7 million to $8 million and could include new recreation and library spaces.

David Mayernik Jr. is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-320-7975 or dmayernik@tribweb.com.

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